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Jail Inmates in 2018

NCJ Number
Date Published
Zhen Zeng
Publication Type
Survey, Statistics, Report (Technical Assistance)
This report presents data on jail inmates for 2018 and examines trends in jail inmate data from 2005 through 2018.
Data for this report were obtained through the Annual Survey of Jails (ASJ), which is a national survey of county, city, and regional jails. This survey has been conducted by the U.S. Justice Department's Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) since 1982. The data cover the number and characteristics of local jail inmates, inmate turnover, jail capacity, and the use of jail space. The report indicates that the jail incarceration rate decreased 12 percent from 2008 to 2018, from 258 to 226 inmates per 100,000 U.S. residents. For 2018, jails reported 10.7 million admissions, a 21-percent decline from 2008. In 2018, 68 percent of jail inmates were held for felony charges. The number of male jail inmates decreased 9 percent from 2008 to 2018, while the female inmate population increased 15 percent. From 2008 to 2018, the jail incarceration rate increased 12 percent for White inmates and decreased about 30 percent for Black inmates; the number of Hispanic inmates decreased 33 percent. The jail incarceration rate for Black residents was lower in 2018 than for any year since 1990. Inmates spent an estimated average of 25 days in jail in 2018. An estimated 81 percent of jail beds were occupied at midyear 2018, down from 95 percent at midyear 2008.
Date Created: March 31, 2020