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Evesham Township Police uses Facebook to publish arrested people

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posted on Aug, 13 2010 @ 11:53 AM

The Evesham Township police department has begun posting mugshots of those that have been arrested. (...) The problem with those posts is that people get branded with the reputation of a criminal, even if they are not convicted. Vincent O’Hearn, for example, was arrested for “inhaling nitrous oxide” and later released. His mugshot still graces the Facebook page of the police department.

Please visit the link provided for the complete story.


Facebook page:

I am all for publishing information on people actually convicted for a crime, especially sex offenders. But to publish pictures of people merely arrested (over 4,700) can do a lot of damage to someone's life. How long before they get sued for destroying innocent's reputation?

Moderators: I am not sure where to post this, fell free to relocate this thread and remove that comment.

posted on Aug, 13 2010 @ 12:39 PM
That's pretty low. It's one thing to post images of convicted criminals, but don't post images of those only arrested. This police department looks sleazy for doing it.

How would they like it if someone set up a FB account and started posting images of Evesham Township police officers? Oh wait it's illegal to post information on police officers.

posted on Aug, 13 2010 @ 01:04 PM
Its only a matter of time that the FB account get's defaced, i wonder who actually promoted this as an idea. Stupidity never ceases to amaze me.

posted on Aug, 13 2010 @ 05:53 PM
Contrary to popular belief its all a matter of public record, and is in no way a violation of law. Any type of encounter with law enforcement is a matter of public record, from arrest, to pc statements, to reports (all contigent upon the person requestion, status of case, etc).

Most small town papers continue to print sections of their paper with law enforcement / fire department stats: number of calls, arrest, citations, people charged etc.

Granted this is a very fine line to walk, balancing transparency of government operations vs. that of public intrest.

posted on Aug, 13 2010 @ 06:22 PM
reply to post by Xcathdra

most small town papers run a police blotter that only describes the nature of the offense, not the arrestee's photo or name. The reason being that they have not yet had a chance at due process, to prove guilt or innocence.

Those people these idiots at Evestown police department decided to put on their web site may as well all be guilty, because that's how the world will now treat them.

posted on Aug, 13 2010 @ 07:47 PM
What is also public record, and would be in no way a violation of the law, is the case of false imprisonment brought against the Evansham Township Police Department, as well as other defamation charges brought against others, in the case of CIEMNIECKI v. PARKER MCCAY P.A. et al. The link provided to this case will lead you to the actual text of Federal Judge Robert Kugler's rejection of Evasham Township P.D.'s motion to dismiss. Several defendants were named in the suit, including The Centtral Record, a weekly newspaper published in Medford N.J.

The libel charge brought against that newspaper was all that was dismissed, and the remaining charges, including those brought against the Evasham Township P.D., were left standing. A digested version of that story can be found here.

A federal judge on Monday refused to dismiss a former Parker McCay law librarian's suit alleging the firm defamed and falsely imprisoned her by having her arrested on a charge of setting off a fire alarm last year.


Her suit, which also names Evesham Township and its police department, says her arrest was in retaliation for complaining to the firm's human resources director about getting a small raise and for arguing with her supervisor about her work schedule. Ciemniecki claims she was on the fourth floor at the time and that the alarm could have been pulled by a participant in one of several contentious groups at the office for mediations and arbitrations.

William Tambussi, who represents Parker McCay, one of the defendants in the suit, had this to say:

Tambussi says if anyone is liable to Ciemniecki, it's the Evesham Township Police Department because it charged Ciemniecki based on a review of the videotape then available. Evesham and the police have asserted cross-claims for indemnification against Parker McCay.

And of course, the Evesham Township Police Department filed a motion to dismiss based upon "immunity" claims, but those claims were roundly rejected by federal Judge Kugler. Naturally, you will not find any information, what-so-ever, regarding the false imprisonment suit brought against Evesham Township P.D. on Facebook. While false imprisonment is a very serious crime, and since a suit has been brought against them, and is a matter of public record, it goes to show the highly hypocritical nature of this Police Department and their willingness to defame people simply because their arrest is a matter of public record. If those arrests do not bear any fruit, and wind up getting dismissed in the same way Ms. Ciemniecki's was, then public record or not, their willingness to use Facebook as a way to "shame" those people becomes clear and undeniable defamation.

The police force in Evesham Township, a small town in New Jersey has, for the past six months, had a Facebook page. And on it go the mugshots of people caught breaking the law: a car thief, shoplifters, and even a child pornographer have all been named and shamed on its wall. It’s a two-way thing, though–residents can post information up there as well. It’s just announced that it’s adding DUI perpetrators to the list, but there’s a storm brewing over–you guessed it: privacy.

The Evesham Township Police Department all ready has a history of false imprisonment, unless they have somehow managed since then to pull of a perfect arrest/conviction ratio they could very well be facing multiple law suits, and if those suits are alleging false imprisonment, and winning, then there very well could be criminal charges that follow, regardless of how perfectly legal it may be to publish arrest mugshots simply because they belong to public records.

posted on Aug, 13 2010 @ 07:50 PM
reply to post by Blackmarketeer

Actually here, they give the name, basic address (133 N. Elm, City), age, and the charges the person is being charged with. The address and age are not always given but the name and charges always are.

This is exactly the same I have seen in many small towns. For the majority of the people listed they are actually committing the crimes at the time when they are arrested. I think it has something to do with the old idea of public shaming, but in today’s society it seems to be cool to be a criminal so I am not sure how well it works.

The best name I have seen yet in the paper here I have seen more than once (a repeat offender theft, violence) her name is Tequila. I can only guess she had/has a great parenting behind her, with her name and her career choice.


posted on Aug, 13 2010 @ 07:56 PM
its actualy a pretty good idea,not everything the tptb makes is bad.
this is actualy one step for a good society.

posted on Aug, 13 2010 @ 08:09 PM

Originally posted by Xcathdra
Contrary to popular belief its all a matter of public record,...

Public record using Facebook as a reference point, now i do realize what my sig represents, but there are times that i wish such a sig was not used.

Its a 3-5 min process when referring to FB.

posted on Aug, 13 2010 @ 08:55 PM
reply to post by Stillalive

I applause the initiative to connect with the community using Facebook. But listing suspects and portray them as criminals before a judgement is reached is where I think they crossed the line. It would be nice if they at least published the name of people previously listed and released without a charge.

posted on Aug, 14 2010 @ 01:58 PM

Originally posted by tristar

Originally posted by Xcathdra
Contrary to popular belief its all a matter of public record,...

Public record using Facebook as a reference point, now i do realize what my sig represents, but there are times that i wish such a sig was not used.

Its a 3-5 min process when referring to FB.

Using Facebook for this is no different than the Sheriffs department posting this exact information on their website. As far as the photos go, contact the jail and ask them for a booking photo, and chances are you will receive it.

Its a matter of public record, and by this I mean the initial charges and investigation. Where this fails is if the person is found not guilty or aquited. That is taken care of on the legal side, but the newspapers, not all, dont bother to un followups on it, at least in larger market cities.

Some of this info will vary from State to State based on their laws / guidelines.

If you think posting it on facebook is a bad idea, then excersize your right to participate in the process and file a complaint with the agency doing it. If you live in that area, then vote in a city council / county comission that shares your views that can force the changes.

I for one applaud the effort to be transprent. Look at it from this point of view. If it were you that was accused, would you want the Police to keep your file secret, no one knows that your were arrested, no access to the charges or governments case?

Granted its a fine line, but at the same time I dont want a Government / Police that do things in secret.

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