Monday, February 22, 2010

Morbid curiosity

An enterprising publisher has figured out that mug shots are public record, and is scraping them from various locations (such as the newspaper) to republish in a classy $1 paper called Cuffed. I haven’t seen one yet, but a number of people have asked me about it, including this guy who emailed me last week:

Can you please tell me what's the point in embarass people who have made mistakes in their lives. Who benefits from that?

These people are ridiculed and scrutinized by friends and co-workers and for what?? Plus it's a cheap attempt to make it look like you guys are doing such a great job making arrests when really you can look at your website and see thousands of warrants that are years old that you guys have never solved. It just seems like a cheap, disingenuine attempt to praise yourselves.

I just do not get it. There has to be better things to do then print that garbage. I can only hope you guys get sued for slander when you have a typo in there which I have heard there are many of, and you incorrectly post what someone was arrested for and they sue the pants of of the Police dept. People who have been arrested have a tough enough time regrouping after their legal problems.

Please explain what or how you guys are helping anyone by attempting to embarass and humiliate people in their own community?? Great idea, Chief, you should be proud. I have made mistakes, I have tried to pay my dues and take responsibilty and learn from my mistakes. Why try and further harm people, I just don't get the logic.

The sad part is that I guarantee that should one of your friends, family members or officers ever be arrested, you will abuse your so called authority and make sure THEY don't appear in this stupid magazine. How many other cities waste time and money with this type of junk??

Save your outrage, friend. This publication has nothing whatsoever to do with the police department. I can’t imagine that enough people would blow a buck on Cuffed for its publisher to make a profit, but apparently there is some kind of fascination with such things. I’ve blogged before about the Tampa Bay mugshots site offered by the St. Petersburg Times, which, although you have to appreciate the technology, appeals to the same human characteristic that causes people to buy supermarket tabloids.


Anonymous said...

Wow. Apparently this guy didn't like his picture he saw in "Cuffed".

ARRRRG!!!! said...

Looking at mug shots, most of them look unhappy.

Anonymous said...

Most people get a copy of the local newspaper and head for their favorite sections such as the comics, news, sports or the obits. I know a few people that head to the Public Record first off. They are all gossips. It must be a character defect.

Gun Nut

Anonymous said...

You are right about the 'police blotter' section being a source for gossip. I am originally from a more rural county where my parents are rather well known in the community. I was driving from Lincoln back home and was stopped for speeding and given a ticket. I wasn't worried about the ticket, it was deserved. But I quickly realized that I was already across the county line and my name would be in the local newspaper. My father doesn't read the section, but I knew many locals who would love the chance to tease him about it. Sure enough, I was ratted out by the old man who lives down the road from us.

Anonymous said...

I wouldn't pay a dime for a pub like that, but there is a good way to keep your name and pic out of such rags, including the public records court records section of the LJS fishwrap: Don't break the law.

Grundle King said...

I wish I had more technological savvy, because I'd love it if someone created an online database of names and mugshots of all the people arrested in Lincoln. A short-lived story in the local fishwrap and a slap on the wrist from our wonderful judicial system just doesn't seem to cut it.

Like the punks who shot out my wife's rear window. As the Chief will state, 'in all likelihood' the police know who did it, but of course those scumbag dirtballs won't fess up to it. So they'll get a little fine that mom and dad will probably help pay for...maybe a little probation...and they'll be on their merry way. Wouldn't it be nice if we, as citizens, could provide a little justice when our judicial system fails?

Anonymous said...

Cuffs won't be on my reading list this year or ever. The e-mailer has it right. USA Olympic that's inspiring.

Anonymous said...

Wow, this was one disgusting plea-bargain. I don't imagine he'll be anything other than a malignant tumor on society in 15 years, just like is now, and just like he was before.

Anonymous said...

For once I do not know what to say, except I thought there was only three of us busy body types in Lincoln.
1. The paper guy.(publisher)
2. M.B (officers know this one)
3. Me
The three of us would make a great team.
Moe Curly Larry?

Anonymous said...

Steve said...

While I can't envision myself ever reading something like "Cuffed", let alone paying for it, I see nothing wrong with it. Yes, it is human nature for people to "rubberneck" and talk to their friends and neighbors about it (gossip, if you want to call it that). On the other hand, if you ever have the occassion to hire someone for a job, loan someone something, or just need someone you can trust for some reason or another, it would be helpful to know if that person was a responsible, law-abiding person, or not.

As an earlier comment suggested, if you don't want your name and picture published for all to see, don't do things you wouldn't be proud to have everyone know.

Anonymous said...

While I understand why you would want to defend the Police Department by informing us that you are not the ones printing this, it basically gave this guy more publicity.

I saw the write up on the LJS yesterday. The guy is such a weasel he won't even publicize his own name. Yet, he is trying to sell the magazine.

The fact is there is money in this stuff. People seem to like reading about misery, affairs, etc. That's why we have papparazzi's.

Anonymous said...

12:48-I was in that hotel a few days earlier. Sorry I wasn't there on the day of the incident as the outcome would have been altered. Plea bargains are bad but reality is that Galle won't get out on his first available opportunity, because there will be a bunch of Deputies at the hearing.

On the original topic: that rag will not be around for more than two issues unless Nick Nolte gets arrested again, as he provides the best mugshots.


Tom Casady said...


By all means, do a background check, but I wouldn't rely on a half-baked tabloid for that information.


I hardly think my off-the-beaten-path personal blog reaches enough readers to float his boat--particularly after the Journal Star's front page article.