Louisiana Mugshots

Crime, Arrest, and Incarceration Rates

Louisiana, a state of over 4.6 million residents, generates over 100,000 mugshots annually. The mugshots come from every arrest made by the state's 348 law enforcement agencies. These agencies made over 150,000 arrests in 2017 alone, representing 31 arrests for every 1,000 residents. These statistics further underlined the recent reputation of the state as one of the nation’s most dangerous. Violent crime and property crime rates in Louisiana over the last decade average 520 incidents and 3,300 incidents in 100,000 residents respectively.

According to the 2017 FBI crime report, Louisiana has the 4th highest violent crime rate, the highest murder rate, and the highest incarceration rate. In 2018, Louisiana ranked secondly nationally for juvenile arrests and 4th for burglary rate. Considering its less restrictive gun laws, Louisiana murders are mostly committed with a firearm. In the last five years, the state has recorded 10.5 murders committed with a firearm for every 100,000 residents.

A look at Louisiana’s incarceration rate shows 1,052 Louisiana citizens are in prison for every 100,000 residents. This 2018 incarceration rate is only second to Oklahoma and 33.6% higher than the national rate. In addition to people incarcerated, Louisiana has some 70,000 citizens under criminal justice supervision. This figure includes 40,000 citizens under probation and 30,000 on parole.

Public Access to Mugshots and Arrest Records

As in other jurisdictions in the US, the criminal justice process in Louisiana begins with an arrest. Consequent to an arrest, the offender is transported to the nearest jail or police station for booking and incarceration until an arraignment before a judge. Mugshots are generated during the booking processing along with fingerprints and other arrest records.

While booking information is considered a public record in Louisiana, the close record system being followed in the state ensure some restriction in accessing arrest records. Some law enforcement agencies in the state choose to publish arrestees' mugshots online (like New Orleans Sheriff’s Office), while others provide such mugshots only on request (and for a fee in Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office).

The availability of these records has been exploited in some quarters for commercial purposes. Some private mugshots aggregators have resorted to extorting offenders whose mugshots appear on their websites. A prevalent practice across the United States that has generated a raging national debate on curtailing the activities of such commercial mugshot aggregators. This has led some states to enact relevant legislation to this effect.

While Louisiana is not one of such states, ex-offenders and arrestees not convicted are not left without alternatives. In May 2014, Louisiana enacted a law allowing for eligible citizens to expunge their mugshots and arrest records from the public domain. Expunged arrest records in Louisiana are not totally destroyed but remain available for use by law enforcement and criminal justice agencies. The filing costs of expungements generally range from $550 to over $700. This depends on whether a DWI is involved and if a prior conviction must be converted to an 893/894 acquittal before the expungement can be granted.

Citizens with an arrest history in Louisiana will find resources here on locating their mugshots, obtaining the relevant arrest records, discovering the expungement process in the county of their arrest and contacting the right local authorities to help accomplish the expunction of their records and mugshots.

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