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Preliminary Data Releases: Prisons Series | Jails Series

WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 20, 2023, 10:00 AM ET                  Contact: OJP MEDIA
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BJS releases preliminary statistics on incarcerated populations in 2022

WASHINGTON ―Local jails nationwide held 663,100 persons in custody at midyear 2022, 4% more than at this time the year before (636,100), according to a new release of preliminary data from the Bureau of Justice Statistics. Jail facilities reported 7.3 million admissions from July 2021 to June 2022, 6.6% more than the prior 12 months (6.9 million) but 37% fewer than a decade earlier (11.6 million).

At midyear 2022, about 14% of the jail population were female. The female population (9%) outpaced the male population in growth (3%) from midyear 2021 to midyear 2022.

About 30% (197,000) of persons in jail in 2022 were convicted, serving a sentence or awaiting sentencing, while 70% (466,100) were unconvicted, awaiting court action on a current charge or being held for other reasons. This was similar to 2021, when 29% of inmates were convicted and 71% were unconvicted.

Trends in state and federal prison populations were also examined. From yearend 2021 to yearend 2022, the number of persons in prison across the United States increased 2% (from 1,205,100 to 1,230,100). During this period, 35 states and the federal prison system had increases in the number of prisoners who had been sentenced to more than 1 year.

About 96% (1,185,500) of all prisoners in 2022 had such sentences, similar to the 97% (1,166,000) in 2021. The distribution of these prisoners by race did not change between 2021 and 2022: 32% were black, 31% were white, 23% were Hispanic, 10% were multiracial or some other race, 2% were American Indian or Alaska Native and 1% were Asian, Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander.

“By releasing preliminary data, BJS is publishing advanced estimates of key statistics on this topic,” said Principal Deputy Director Kevin M. Scott, PhD. “We look forward to releasing the preliminary data on jails and prisons to provide our stakeholders with timely data as quickly as possible.”

These and other data are available through BJS’s preliminary release of interactive tables and charts on local jail inmates and state and federal prisoners. Findings are based on the Annual Survey of Jails and National Prisoner Statistics data collections. Complete data will be forthcoming in two reports: Jail Inmates in 2022 – Statistical Tables, written by BJS Statistician Zhen Zeng, PhD; and Prisoners in 2022 – Statistical Tables, written by BJS Statistician E. Ann Carson, PhD. The preliminary statistics for 2022 may be updated at that time.

About the Bureau of Justice Statistics

The Bureau of Justice Statistics of the U.S. Department of Justice’s Office of Justice Programs is the principal federal agency responsible for collecting, analyzing and disseminating reliable statistics on crime and criminal justice in the United States. Kevin M. Scott, PhD, Principal Deputy Director of BJS, is the acting agency head. More information about BJS and criminal justice statistics can be found at bjs.ojp.gov.

About the Office of Justice Programs

The Office of Justice Programs provides federal leadership, grants, training, technical assistance, and other resources to improve the nation’s capacity to prevent and reduce crime; advance equity and fairness in the administration of justice; assist victims; and uphold the rule of law. More information about OJP and its components can be found at www.ojp.gov.

Date Published: September 20, 2023