Are Mugshots Admissible As Evidence In Virginia ?

In Johnson v. Commonwealth, 2 Va. App. 447, 345 S.E.2d 303 (1986), the Court adopted a three-part test to determine the admissibility of "mug shots." To be admissible, each of the following three conditions must be met:

(1) The Government must have a demonstrable need to introduce the photographs;

(2) The photographs themselves, if shown to the jury, must not imply that the defendant has a prior criminal record; and

(3) The manner of introduction at trial must be such that it does not draw particular attention to the source or implications of the photographs.Id. at 454, 345 S.E.2d at 307.