"Most people don't carry a current photo of themselves," Curry said. "Even their driver's license (photo) could be up to four years old. That would really hinder us in positively identifying them."
In addition to a jail's need for a current photo of an arrestee, media attorney Jeff Hunt said mugshots also keep people informed about law enforcement activity in their communities.
"There is a legitimate public interest in scrutinizing that process — verifying the identity of individuals who have been arrested and having the public know who they are," said Hunt, who is not involved in Moon's case.
He said banning pretrial mugshots isn't necessary to ensure that someone receives a fair trial.
"Judges have a number of tools at their disposal to protect the defendant's right to a fair trial," Hunt said.
That includes thoroughly questioning prospective jurors to make sure they haven't been exposed to photographs or other material that might prejudice them against the accused, he said.
"We have rules that the courts follow to detect jurors who cannot render a fair verdict," Hunt said.
Duchesne County prosecutors are expected to oppose Moon's request that he not be required to pose for a mugshot. Moon is scheduled to stand trial June 1.
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