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David Bowie’s mugshot from 1976 arrest with Iggy Pop goes on auction

Bowie was arrested in Rochester, New York after police found cannabis on his person

By Charlotte Krol

David Bowie is seen up close in a black and white photo
David Bowie photographed in 1971. (Picture: Wikimedia Commons/Djmehow)

The original mugshot of David Bowie taken in 1976 when he was arrested with Iggy Pop on a drug charge in New York has gone on auction.

It’s expected to fetch up to £1,500 at Ewbank’s auction today (15 July). The picture in question, which you can see below, was taken in Rochester on 21 March 1976 after Bowie had been detained for carrying on his person approximately 0.5lb of cannabis.

According to the listing, the seller’s “cousin’s husband was a gentleman called Scott” who “was the officer who fingerprinted and photographed David Bowie”.

It’s claimed that Scott “gave it to the seller personally as a wedding present as he knew he was a Bowie fan”. The vendor has been in possession of the photo for 46 years.

Bowie was held with three others including Pop for three hours after police found the drugs after he’d played a gig in Rochester the previous evening (20 March 1976). The pop star was released on bail for $2,000 [via NYS Music].

The singer pleaded not guilty and a grand jury decided to pass on the case.

Meanwhile, Bowie’s album The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars was recently reissued to mark its 50th anniversary.

The re-released classic is available in two different vinyl formats: as a half speed LP or as a picture disc. It also comes with a replica poster of the album.

Elsewhere, earlier this week the release date for the Bowie documentary Moonage Daydream was revealed. Fans can watch the Brett Morgen-directed film worldwide from 16 September.

The film is described in press material as a “feature length experiential cinematic odyssey” that “explores Bowie’s creative, musical and spiritual journey”. There will also be IMAX screenings in several territories.

Its arrival follows on from a celebration in January of Bowie’s eclectic screen career by the British Film Institute, with its Southbank base in London hosting screenings of films including Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me, Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence, and Christiane F.