Mug shots: What happens when you're arrested in La Crosse County

2012-02-26T00:00:00Z 2012-02-26T09:47:34Z Mug shots: What happens when you're arrested in La Crosse CountyBy ANNE JUNGEN | La Crosse Tribune

So you get arrested. Here’s what happens next:

STEP 1: Jailers first search and screen you for medical concerns when you arrive at the downtown facility.

STEP 2: You get a free new outfit.

STEP 3: You’re led to an aging video camera that captures a still image, your mug shot.

The rules

Everyone must stand in front of the same painted bluish-gray wall. Any photo could end up in a lineup and they need to be uniform, said jail Sgt. Steve Anderson, who has booked hundreds of inmates in 29 years.

The directions are simple: Stand straight. Look forward. Don’t do anything stupid.

“Some really ham it up for the camera,” Anderson said.

It’s hard to believe, but most inmates cooperate for the booking photo. Inappropriate gestures guarantee a second picture, while jailers have to distract some stubborn inmates.

And if they don’t feel like behaving, jailers haul inmates to a cell and will try again for the photo later. Inmates also are warned no photo means no phone call.

“They’re going to do it sometime before they’re released,” Anderson said.

How they’re used

Jailers shot about 5,300 mug shots last year, down about 700 from 2010.

“A few could be responsible for five or six times,” Anderson said.

It’s state law that everyone arrested must have a mug shot. Besides using them in lineups and to keep track of inmates, the photo is included on a plastic bracelet to help jailers dispensing medicine and canteen items.

Copyright 2016 La Crosse Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

(3) Comments

  1. bigcock355
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    bigcock355 - December 21, 2015 11:32 am
    bring back the old school jailers and get rid of frank.f
  2. bigcock355
    Report Abuse
    bigcock355 - December 21, 2015 11:30 am
    you need to bring the old school jailers back,thats when the jail ran good,and get rid of frank.f
    Report Abuse
    UNREAL - October 10, 2014 4:20 am
    I know shes with her dad who well knows shes FINE
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