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Prisoners in 2017

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Data are reported on the U.S. prison population at the end of 2017 and over the period 1978-2017, along with imprisonment rates, offense and offender characteristics, and prisoners in local jails and private and military facilities.
The number of prisoners under state or federal jurisdiction was 1,489,400 at the end of 2017, which was a 1.2-percent decrease from the prisoner population at yearend 2016. The imprisonment rate for sentenced prisoners under state or federal jurisdiction decreased 2.1 percent from 2016 to 2017, from 450 to 440 sentenced prisoners per 100,000 U.S. residents. The imprisonment rate decreased 13 percent from 2007 to 2017. The federal prison population decreased by 6,100 prisoners from yearend 2016 to yearend 2017, a 3-percent decrease. This accounted for one-third of the overall change in the U.S. prison population. Of the state prisoners, 55 percent were serving sentences for violent offenses at yearend 2016, the most recent year for which data are available. The number of state or federal prisoners held in private facilities decreased 5 percent from 2016 to 2017. Non-citizens composed about the same portion of the U.S. prison population (7.6 percent) as of the total U.S. population (7 percent). The imprisonment rate of sentenced Black adults declined 4 percent from 2016 to 2017 and by 31 percent from 2007 to 2017. Nearly half of federal prisoners were serving a sentence for a drug-trafficking offense at fiscal yearend 2017. At yearend 2017, the imprisonment rate for sentenced Black males was almost six times that of sentenced White males. At yearend 2016, an estimated 60 percent of Hispanics and Blacks sentenced to serve more than 1 year in state prison had been convicted of and sentenced for a violent offense, compared to 48 percent of White prisoners. 22 tables and 1 figure
Date Created: April 25, 2019