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The Story Behind This College Student's Glamorous Viral Mugshot Calls Texas' Strict Marijuana Laws Into Question

Texas A&M University-Commerce student Marshala Perkins was arrested and charged with marijuana possession back in February. Now, thanks to a recent tweet, the 19-year-old's glamorous mugshot has gone viral.

This is 19-year-old Marshala Perkins of Dallas, Texas. She's a student at Texas A&M University-Commerce and a self-taught makeup artist.

“When I was younger my parents were really strict so I spent a lot of time in the house," she told As/Is. "I just found YouTube and started watching makeup videos.”
Marshaladenise_ /Twitter / Via Twitter: @Marshaladenise_

“When I was younger my parents were really strict so I spent a lot of time in the house," she told As/Is. "I just found YouTube and started watching makeup videos.”

On February 6, a bored Perkins decided to demonstrate this glittery makeup look on Facebook Live. Some friends stopped by her dorm after the tutorial to invite her out, but two white Hunt County police officers approached the college student at her car before she could leave.

"[One officer] asked me for my handicap sticker because I was in a handicap spot," Marshala said, clarifying that her mother whom she often drove around was handicap. "I gave it to him and he brought it back, said everything was clear." But instead of leaving, the police officer allegedly said, "It smells like weed in here"—Marshala claims it did not—and told her to exit the car so he could search her.
Marshaladenise_ /Twitter

"[One officer] asked me for my handicap sticker because I was in a handicap spot," Marshala said, clarifying that her mother whom she often drove around was handicap. "I gave it to him and he brought it back, said everything was clear."

But instead of leaving, the police officer allegedly said, "It smells like weed in here"—Marshala claims it did not—and told her to exit the car so he could search her.

What the officers found were two grams of weed, which the makeup artist had planned to smoke with her friends, she told As/Is. "And so I went to jail for it with my beat face.”

She knew her mugshot had been released on the Greenville Court House website the following day and on the self-explanatory Twitter account @mugshotbaes a few weeks later. But what she didn't know is that five months later 270,000+ people would be hyping up her makeup skills in a now-viral tweet: "We need a tutorial! Free her!"

Marshala's story mirrors that of Shia Yearwood, a black 24-year-old hairstylist whose mugshot also went viral and resulted in a surge of new clients.
@proletariatitty/Twitter / Via Twitter: @proletariatitty

Marshala's story mirrors that of Shia Yearwood, a black 24-year-old hairstylist whose mugshot also went viral and resulted in a surge of new clients.

@proletariatitty / Via Twitter: @SandiaMarcellon
@Tumsaso / Via Twitter: @Tumsaso

"At first I was embarrassed because that’s not really something that you want to be broadcasted," Perkins admitted. "But then when I saw all the support for me with my face beat—because makeup is something that I really wanted to do—I was like 'Okay!' I wasn’t feeling too bad about it.”

@perrieskendall / Via Twitter: @SandiaMarcellon

Of course the best makeup artists always share what products they used to achieve their looks, so when people started asking, Marshala delivered:

Marshala plans to release a full tutorial on her new Youtube channel in the coming weeks. In the meantime, here are all the products she used for her:Brows: NYX Professional Makeup Eyebrow Gel in EspressoConcealer: L.A. Girl Pro HD Concealer in Fawn Eyeshadow: BH Cosmetics "Take Me Back To Brazil" PaletteGlitter: AmazonFoundation: Maybelline Fit Me Matte & Poreless in Spicy BrownHighlight: Maybelline Face Studio Master Chrome Metallic Highlighter in Molten Gold
Contour: 3D Ruby Kiss Contour Powder PaletteSetting Powder: Sacha Buttercup PowderLips: Maybelline Color Sensational Vivid Matte Liquid Lip Color in Nude Thrill and a brown lip linerSetting Spray: Ruby Kisses Never Touch Up Face Setting SprayPrimer: Hard Candy Sheer Envy Primer Long Wear 12 Hour Primer & Hard Candy Sheer Envy Pore-Defense Primer Serum
Lashes: Miss 3D Volume Lashes in M302A
@Marshaladenise_/Twitter / Via Twitter: @Marshaladenise_

Marshala plans to release a full tutorial on her new Youtube channel in the coming weeks. In the meantime, here are all the products she used for her:

Brows: NYX Professional Makeup Eyebrow Gel in Espresso

Concealer: L.A. Girl Pro HD Concealer in Fawn

Eyeshadow: BH Cosmetics "Take Me Back To Brazil" Palette

Glitter: Amazon

Foundation: Maybelline Fit Me Matte & Poreless in Spicy Brown

Highlight: Maybelline Face Studio Master Chrome Metallic Highlighter in Molten Gold


Contour: 3D Ruby Kiss Contour Powder Palette

Setting Powder: Sacha Buttercup Powder

Lips: Maybelline Color Sensational Vivid Matte Liquid Lip Color in Nude Thrill and a brown lip liner

Setting Spray: Ruby Kisses Never Touch Up Face Setting Spray

Primer: Hard Candy Sheer Envy Primer Long Wear 12 Hour Primer & Hard Candy Sheer Envy Pore-Defense Primer Serum


Lashes: Miss 3D Volume Lashes in M302A

The Internet star had never been arrested prior to that February night when she was charged with possession of marijuana, held overnight in jail, and ordered to pay $2,000 in court fees during her six-month probation period.

Marshaladenise_ / Via Twitter: @Marshaladenise_

As for being arrested on campus, the freshman noted that many of her fellow black students have had their own similar police encounters. "I mean it was getting to the point where nobody that I was meeting was able to tell me, ‘Oh no, I was never arrested down here for marijuana’ or ‘I’ve never been stopped or searched or anything'," she told As/Is.

instagram.com

In 2016, Texas law enforcement officials made more annual marijuana arrests (64,949) than did cops in any other state, according to The San Antonio Current and FBI data published by The Intercept. Ninety-eight percent of those arrests were for possession. In regards to racial disparities, a 2013 ACLU study revealed that while marijuana use is roughly equal among black and white people, black people are 2.33 times as likely to be arrested for marijuana possession in Texas and 3.73 times as likely nationwide.

Marshala's arrest resulted in the loss of her part-time job at Walmart, leaving her with no money for the rest of the semester, she explained. Between that and her mother's battle with breast cancer—"her condition is getting worse"—Marshala decided to take a voluntary leave of absence the upcoming fall semester.

She's currently working full-time as a security officer and taking makeup clients on the side. “It’s been really hard trying to get a job because of my background now. A lot of people don’t want to hire people with marijuana on their background,” the 19-year-old told us.
@Marshaladenise_/Twitter / Via Twitter: @Marshaladenise_

She's currently working full-time as a security officer and taking makeup clients on the side. “It’s been really hard trying to get a job because of my background now. A lot of people don’t want to hire people with marijuana on their background,” the 19-year-old told us.

When asked whether she had anything to share with the As/Is audience, Marshala advised readers to "be safe and know what’s going on around you at all times," especially black women who should "know their rights" above all else.

“I really regret going out to my car that night," Marshala admitted. "But it’s all a learning experience, you know?"
@Marshaladenise_/Twitter / Via Twitter: @Marshaladenise_

“I really regret going out to my car that night," Marshala admitted. "But it’s all a learning experience, you know?"

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