A NO LONGER IMAGINED COMMUNITY: THE VISIBILITY OF THE ONLINE MUG SHOT

Sarah Jackson Young

Abstract


The Maricopa County Sheriff's Office in Phoenix, AZ runs a "Mugshot of the Day" program where the department posts the mug shot of all those who are booked by the agency. The rationale is that more eyes on more criminals will ultimately lead to a closer, safer community. However, this conclusion of safety can be contested, and I argue that although the MCSO’s online mug shot program may have made the criminal more visible, while it aims to unite the community, it can also be seen as fragmenting it and making it less sustainably safe.

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