The Smoking Gun

From Academic Kids

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Screenshot from The Smoking Gun

The Smoking Gun is a website that posts legal documents, arrest records, and police mugshots on a daily basis. One section of the site is made up entirely of "riders" in the contracts of popular music acts, focusing on the artists' personal demands; most of the publicized demands are either highly self-indulgent or inherently humorous. Most of its content revolves around historical and current events, although it also features documents and photos relating to out-of-the-ordinary crimes and people.

The website was founded in 1997 by William Bastone and Daniel Green, former reporters for the Village Voice. Most of The Smoking Gun's content is obtained by Freedom of Information Act requests to federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies, and from public records such as court documents. The site has used those requests to assemble a collection of mugshots of current and historical celebrities.

The term "the smoking gun" is a reference to an object which serves as conclusive evidence or proof of a crime or similar act.

Court TV purchased The Smoking Gun in 2000.

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