U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government, Department of Justice.

Correctional Populations in the United States, 2020 – Statistical Tables

NCJ Number
303184
Author(s)
Rich Kluckow, DSW, and Zhen Zeng, Ph.D., BJS Statisticians
Date Published
March 2022
Description

This report summarizes data on populations supervised by probation or parole agencies and those incarcerated in state or federal prisons or in the custody of local jails. The report presents data on the number of persons supervised by adult correctional systems from 2010 to 2020 and on their correctional status (i.e., in prison, in local jail, on parole, or on probation).

Highlights
  • At yearend 2020, an estimated 5,500,600 persons were under the supervision of adult correctional systems in the United States, 11% fewer than at the same time the previous year (adjusted for persons on dual correctional statuses).
  • The decline in the correctional population during 2020 was due to decreases in both the community supervision population (down 276,700, or 6.6%) and the incarcerated population (down 294,400, or 18.9%).
  • About 7 in 10 persons under correctional supervision were supervised in the community (3,890,400) at yearend 2020, while about 3 in 10 (1,691,600) were incarcerated in a state or federal prison or local jail.
  • From 2010 to 2020, the correctional population decreased 22.4% (down 1,588,400 persons).
  • From 2010 to 2020, the decrease in the probation population accounted for 63.1% of the total decline in the correctional population.

See also Key Statistics.

Date Published: March 24, 2022