The Natchitoches Parish Sheriff’s Office and other law enforcement agencies across the State of Louisiana has learned, Louisiana House Bill 729, or referred to as the “Mug Shot Bill” has passed through the Louisiana Legislature and is expected to be signed off on by Governor John Bel Edwards according to information from the Louisiana Sheriff’s Association.

Upon the Governor’s signature into law, all law enforcement agencies across the state will be expected to comply immediately.

HB 729 will require all law enforcement agencies to cease the publishing of booking photos to the public and media with certain exceptions.

This will also include mug shots on our social media and website pages, that most of you have been accustomed to and kept aware of someone being arrested in your communities.

Our goal has always been to keep the community informed and aware of criminal arrests made by our agency rather it be by your tips, detectives investigating crimes or patrol responding to and enforcing laws across the parish.

HB 729 will allow the publication of certain mug shots such as :

    • The individual is a fugitive and the agency determines that releasing the photograph will assist in apprehending the suspect.
    • The individual is an imminent threat to an individual or public safety and releasing the photo will help reduce the threat.
    • A court orders the release of a photo based on a finding that there is a “legitimate interest” in its release.

    The charges against an individual are for a crime of violence according to La.R.S. 14:2 other than stalking; OR are for charges include in this list against vulnerable populations:

    -Sex offenses as defined in LA.R.S.15:541
    -Human trafficking offenses as defined in LA.R.S.15:541;
    -Offenses affecting the health and morals of minors beginning at LA.R.S.14:91;
    -Offenses affecting the health and safety of persons with infirmities, beginning at LA.r..14:93.3;
    -Video voyeurism
    -Cruelty of Animals

    • The individual is convicted or pleads guilty or nolo contendere to the crimes for which he is charged or to any “lesser included “crime” listed in Article 558 of this Code for the crime(s) for which the offender was arrested; or
    • There is pending or reasonably anticipated criminal litigation related to the crime(s) for the offender was arrested.If you see something suspicious, say something, contact the Natchitoches Parish Sheriff’s Office at 352-6432.

    All future mugshots released by the Natchitoches Parish Sheriff’s Office is subject to the following Disclaimer:

    “All persons are presumed innocent until proven guilty in the court of law or administrative process action.”

    NPSO Press Release REF: LA. HB729