For people who find their faces splashed across mug shot websites, even if they were later found innocent of the crimes, it can haunt them for the rest of their lives.
Now, lawmakers and even credit card companies are stepping in to help protect people from further humiliation.
Owners of mug shot websites will post the photos released by police departments with the person’s name and information. Many then make money by charging people, sometimes hundreds of dollars, to have a mug shot removed.
Michael Needham said the mug shot from his DUI arrest in Georgia ended up on one of these websites and now pops up with every Internet search of his name.
“It’s extremely hard to fight these mug shot companies. It’s hard, I don’t even know who to turn to, to try to make these things go away.”