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Can the jail report use an obituary photo when running a story.

Augusta, GA |
Filed under: Wrongful death

My son was shot and killed immediately in a home invasion therefore was not arrested. My son had no prior criminal record, meaning no prior photo on public record. After the obituary was ran, the Jail Report used that photo. I read their guidelines and it specifically stated they legally can run an arrest record/mugshot because it is public record; but my son never had the chance to be arrested. I was given the copyright to his Senior High School photos, which is what I ran in the local newspaper. I am not denying the incident but I would not have ran the obituary photo if I would have known they were able to use it.

This question was originally posted under general, I apologize but this is should not be under Wrongful Death. The question is in reference to the Jail Reports rights to run an obituary picture. I will repost this question in the correct category.

Attorney Answers 5

Posted

Since you had to get the rights to use the photo from the school, the school itself may have a cause of action, but I am not sure you would. I would re-post this questions not under wrongful death but under copyright law, privacy law, or first amendment law (even though it was a law enforcement agency rather than the newspaper who used it without permission). Also, when you post, make sure to explain the reason the jail needed the photo anyway.

The above information is general in nature. In order to obtain more specific and legal advice upon which to base your important decisions, please contact our office directly for a free phone or in person consultation. Robert M. Gardner, Jr. Hicks, Massey & Gardner, LLP hmgrmg@yahoo.com 53 W. Candler St. Or 718 Oak St. Winder, Ga. 30680 Gainesville, Georgia (770) 307-4899 (770) 538-0555 gadebtlaw.com hicksmasseyandgardner.com serving metro Atlanta and all of Northeast Georgia Bankruptcy, Divorce, Personal Injury, Worker’s Compensation, Medical Malpractice, Adoption, Civil and Criminal Litigation

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Posted

In addition to the above answer, you should retain a local wrongful death lawyer to investigate a claim against the perpetrator. Good luck.

Licensed in PA & NJ. 29% Contingency Fee. Phone: 215-510-6755 www.InjuryLawyerPhiladelphia.com

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Posted

The school may have a cause of action over the photo. I don't see where you do.

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Posted

They probably can. I am sorry to hear of your loss.

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Posted

i am licensed in Georgia and located in Augusta. I have a case presently that is going to put the Jail report out business for their malicious, false, and reckless reporting. they had no right in my view to run a photo of your deceased son who was no "in jail" or "arrested," since he in fact was a victim of a crime. Please visit www.neal-law.com. Call me. i will be glad to give you a free consultation to decide if its worth pursuing. Joe Neal, Jr.

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