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Crime Pays When You're Sexy

Arrested for breaking and entering your heart meme Imgur Crime Pays When You re Sexy

The “hot felon” phenomenon didn’t start with Meeks. Four years ago, Meagan Mccullough, a then-27 year old Floridian, was booked on a DUI charge. Her mugshot, subsequently released online, went viral. Overnight, she received interview requests from major media outlets, and began receiving calls, texts, and emails from “many random and bizarre foreign admirers” across the globe. Though Mccullough’s fame arose from criminal circumstances, she embraced it; society wholly glossed over the fact that she’d broken the law. In a chat withTen Minute Interviews, she expressed her gratitude over the ordeal:

“If none of this ever happened to me, I definitely wouldn’t have been able to take my children on a vacation to Disney World last weekend and for that, I am beyond grateful.”

While Mccullough states she is “not fond of being known solely as a ‘hot mugshot,’” she openly markets herself under the moniker on Twitter (#attractiveconvict), and has stated that she’d gladly pose with Playboy, should Hugh Hefner express any interest. In the wake of Meeks’ ordeal, her fame has been reinvigorated:

“As of lately, people have been comparing me to the new ‘hot mugshot’ Jeremy Meeks and making up photoshopped babies using our images. I get weird updates and articles sent to me daily. He is an actual criminal; I think he is also gang related!!! No thank you, it would definitely never happen and I’m embarrassed to be paired up with that!”


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“Donating to good looking people today!” proclaims proudly proclaims another fan, with a $50 transfer. Dayle, a third female funder, agrees: “He deserves money just for being so good-looking.”

What Is Beautiful Is Good  

We’ve previously written about the “halo effect,” or, as psychologist Robert Cialdini writes, society’s propensity to “automatically assign to good-looking individuals...favorable traits.” It’s widely known that attractive people enjoy preferential treatment in the workplace, but, as Meeks’ case has proven, even criminals can don a halo. In his best-seller Influence, Cialdini enumerates on the benefits attractive felons enjoy in the legal system:

“Unsettling research indicates that our judicial process is...susceptible to the influences of body dimensions and bone structure. It now appears that good-looking people are likely to receive highly favorable treatment in the legal system.”

The research Cialdini cites is vast and has consistently reinforced the assertion that good-looking inmates are more likely to receive favorable treatment from jurors, judges, and the general public -- regardless of criminal histories.

In the 1980 studyDefendant's Attractiveness as a Factor in the Outcome of Criminal Trials(Stewart), a team of researchers systematically rated the attractiveness of 74 male defendants at the onset of their trials. Consistently, the most handsome inmates received the lightest sentences, and were nearly twice as likely to avoid jail time as “ugly” inmates. Inanother study, researchers staged a series of fake negligence trials -- 50% using an unattractive defendant, and 50% using an attractive one -- to panels of uninformed jurors. While the unattractive defendants were ordered to pay an average of $10,051, jurors were more far more lenient with the attractive ones, demanding them to pay out an average of only $5,623.

Similarly, a number of reports have explored society’s reaction to crimes committed by violent criminals. In 1975, researchers dictated detailed crime scenarios (including whether or not the defendant was attractive); the panel of participants consistently let attractive criminals slide. A 1991 study appropriately pennedThe impact of litigants' baby-facedness and attractiveness on adjudications examined the effects of defendants’ facial appearances on judicial decisions in 506 small claims cases. Not surprisingly, attractiveness had a “significantly favorable” impact on the cases’ outcomes for defendants.

Beautiful people really do have it easier than the rest of us.

How do they look so good in mug shots???

wow. three things come to mind:

1. why isn't this "hot" criminal exploiting his good looks BEFORE he's a criminal? hasn't he been getting preferential treatment his whole life? maybe he truly is psychotic.

2. the meme with the DUI girl is hilarious.

3. richard ramirez, "the night stalker," who had a crowd of female groupies that went to his court trials to ogle him.  that is so weird.

It's like Sergey said in the link above:  credit to the photographer.

yeah. and that other photo proves it in the mugshot memes! (your link above.)  sergey's is hilarious!

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