The Virginia State Police (VSP) can run face recognition searches of 1.2 million Virginia mug shots using the VSP’s Centralized Criminal Information System (CCIS) (015274). Mug shots are “retained indefinitely,” which means VSP does not “scrub” its database to eliminate people who had charges dropped or dismissed except when records are expunged (015264, 016858). “Each criminal justice agency in Virginia” can access the system upon request (015303). Police are not required to have reasonable suspicion to run a search; use of the system is limited to “criminal justice purposes only” (015272). VSP does not conduct audits of how the system is used (015264, 016859).
African Americans are likely overrepresented in the system; statewide, they are arrested at a rate 108% higher than their share of Virginia’s population.
VSP uses a DataWorks Plus face recognition system, which employs a NEC algorithm (016858).
Sources: VSP, U.S. Census (Last updated: September 2016). You can review our scorecard criteria in the Methodology section. Numerical citations, e.g. (123456), refer to official records available by clicking "View Documents" below.