Inmates in America – Inmates Incarcerated in City and County Jails During 2010

For the second year in a row, in the one year period ending June 30, 2010, the number of inmates in city and county jails in custody has declined. The purpose of this article is to present you the most relevant numbers as presented by the US Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics. This does not include inmates incarcerated in state or federal prisons.

The Numbers

The average number of inmates in US City and County Jails on any given day for the period from mid-year 2009 to mid-year 2010 was 748,728, a decline of 2.4% from the previous year. The jail incarceration rate decreased to 242 jail inmates per 100,000 US residents, the lowest it has been since 2003. The BJS has been tracking this data since 1982, after the US began seeing an explosion in those arrested and jailed in jails and prisons. According to the BJS, this decline was centered on large jails only, those who incarcerate 1,000 inmates or more.

Small jails, those with an average daily inmate count of 50 or less, and medium size jails with an inmate count up to 750, actually saw increases in their daily populations.

Demographic Breakdown Nationwide

  • Adults made up 99% of the jail population.
  • Males 87.7%
  • Females 12.3%
  • Whites 44.3%
  • Blacks 37.8%
  • Hispanics 15.8%
  • Inmates Convicted  61.1%
  • Inmates not Convicted  38.9%
  • US Immigration and ICE Inmates 3.5%

These percentages have remained stable since the report from the year 2000.

A Deeper Look into the Jail Populations

Only six of the large jails nationwide reported major declines in population, resulting in 46% of the nationwide decline.  They are:

  • Los Angeles County with a decline of 3,007 inmates
  • Maricopa County, AZ    1,196 inmates
  • Orange County, CA    1,143 inmates
  • Philadelphia    1,111 inmates
  • Fresno County, CA    1,105 inmates
  • Harris County, TX    1,096 inmates

One-third (57 total) of large jails actually reported an increase in their population during the period in this report, while the smaller jails saw increases generally nationwide.

Local jails admitted almost 13 million inmates during this period, or about 17 times the actual population on an average given day. Bed space utilization was about 86% of their rated capacity and reached a high in June 2010 at 91% utilization.

Jail Beds

In 2010 there were enough jail beds to hold 866,974 inmates, an increase of about 17,000 over 2009 and a 210,000 increase over the year 2000.

The number of beds by jail size breaks down as follows:

50 inmates or less     22,806

50-99                         37,460

100-249                     88,750

250-499                    106,826

500-999                    121,704

1,000 or more           371,181

The Top 50 Largest Jails

The following is a list of the largest Jails in America, based upon the average daily population of inmates incarcerated.

JAIL                                                Number of Daily Inmates

  1. Los Angeles County, CA                  16,862
  2. New York City, NY                            13,049
  3. Harris County Texas                         10,242
  4. Cook County, IL                                  9,586
  5. Philadelphia City, PA                          8,804
  6. Maricopa County, AZ                          8,055
  7. Dallas County, TX                               6,865
  8. Miami-Dade County, FL                      5,770
  9. Shelby County, TN                              5,766

10.  San Bernardino County, CA                5,755

11.  Orange County, CA                             5,134

12.  San Diego County, CA                        4,848

13.  Broward County, FL                            4,583

14.  Alameda County, CA                           4,305

15.  Sacramento County, CA                      4,199

16.  Bexar County, TX                                 4,169

17.  Jacksonville City, FL                            3,835

18.  Baltimore City, MD                               3,701

19.  Orange County, FL                               3,604

20.  Santa Clara County, CA                       3,587

21.  DeKalb County, GA                              3,560

22.  Davidson County, TN                           3,551

23.  Orleans Parish, LA                               3,522

24.  Riverside County, CA                           3,410

25.  Hillsborough County, FL                       3,340

26.  Tarrant County, TX                                3,248

27.  Allegheny County, PA                            3,233

28.  Pinellas County, FL                               3,225

29.  Gwinnett County, GA                             3,198

30.  Clark County, NV                                   3,158

31.  District of Columbia                               3,102

32.  Palm Beach County, FL                         2,901

33.  Milwaukee County, WI                           2,710

34.  Travis County, TX                                  2,691

35.  Bernalillo County, NM                            2,689

36.  Kern County, CA                                    2,483

37.  Cobb County, GA                                   2,369

38.  King County, WA                                    2,343

39.  York County, PA                                     2,284

40.  Suffolk County, MA                                 2,280

41.  Mecklenburg County, NC                       2,274

42.  Fulton County, GA                                  2,269

43.  Polk County, FL                                      2,268

44.  Salt Lake County, UT                             2,196

45.  Essex County, NJ                                   2,151

46.  Denver County, CO                                2,101

47.  Oklahoma County, OK                           2,100

48.  Marion County, IN                                  2,096

49.  Clayton County, GA                                2,080

50.  Franklin County, OH                               2,041

Overall, several of the larger jails have seen a slightly reduced number of inmates in custody, while the majority of jails nationwide have seen an increase. Nothing much has changed however, as the United States continues to lead the world in having the largest percentage of a population incarcerated.

Go here to find an inmate in a jail or prison in America, anywhere, anytime, on any device.

To view or download the full report from the Bureau of Justice Statistics, click here.

Comments

comments

About Mark Miclette 682 Articles
writes about inmates, jails, prisons, courts and the lives of people who live and work within the United States Criminal Justice System. His mission can be summed up in a single word; transparency.