Randal Reid facial recognition wrongful arrest, jailing

Occurred: November 2022

The use of facial recognition technology by Louisiana authorities led to the arrest and jailing of Randal Reid, a Georgia man on a fugitive warrant from a state he had never visited, according to his lawyer.

Reid was detained in DeKalb County, Georgia, in late November 2022, after Louisiana police used facial recognition to mistakenly link him to the theft of USD 13,000 of purses in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Reid spent six days in jail and missed a week of work due to the incident.

According to AP, 'Jefferson Sheriff Joe Lopinto’s office did not respond to several requests for information [..] on Reid’s arrest and release, the agency’s use of facial recognition or any safeguards around it.' Gizmodo reports Louisiana authorities 'admitted the false match 'tacitly''.

In July 2022, New Orleans city council voted to allow the New Orleans Police Department (NOPD) to use facial recognition, having outlawed its use in December 2020. 

Per Protocol, the department never kept records of how often the technology was used or whether it facilitated investigations or led to arrests or convictions.

Operator: Jefferson Parish Sheriff's Office; Louisiana State Analytical and Fusion Exchange  
Developer: IDEMIA

Country: USA

Sector: Govt - police

Purpose: Identify criminals

Technology: Facial recognition
Issue: Accuracy/reliability; Privacy

Transparency: Governance; Black box; Marketing; Privacy 

Page info
Type: Incident
Published: January 2023
Last updated: August 2023