Number Of Sentenced People In US Prisons, By Offense
" Forty-seven percent (66,500) of all persons in federal prison were serving time for a drug offense on September 30, 2021 (the most recent date for which federal prison offense data were available) (tables 19 and 20).
" At fiscal year-end 2021, about 20% (28,500) of persons sentenced to federal prison were serving a sentence for a weapons offense.
" About 4% (6,000) of the federal prison population on September 30, 2021 were sentenced for an immigration offense.
" Persons sentenced for a violent offense accounted for 8% (10,100) of male federal prisoners and 4% (400) of female federal prisoners at fiscal year-end 2021.
" Sixty-four percent (6,300) of females in federal prison on September 30, 2021 were serving time for a drug offense.
" About 6 in 10 Hispanic persons in federal prison on September 30, 2021 were sentenced for a drug offense, compared to 5 in 10 Asian, Native Hawaiian, or Other Pacific Islander persons; 4 in 10 black or white persons; and 2 in 10 American Indian or Alaska Native persons.
" Among American Indian or Alaska Native persons serving time in federal prison on September 30, 2021, about 57% (1,900) were sentenced for a violent offense, with sexual abuse and murder or nonnegligent manslaughter each accounting for about a third of these individuals.
" On September 30, 2021, white persons accounted for 40% of all federal prisoners sentenced for fraud.
" Of the 1,043,700 persons in state prison at yearend 2020 (the most recent year for which state prison offense data were available), 651,800 (62%) were serving sentences for a violent offense, 141,100 (14%) for a property crime, 131,600 (13%) for a drug offense, and 109,100 (10%) for a public order offense (tables 16 and 17).
" Persons serving time for a violent offense accounted for a larger percentage of the state prison population at yearend 2020 than at yearend 2019 (58%) because some states expedited the release of persons based on, among other criteria, convictions for a nonviolent offense. (See Prisoners in 2020 – Statistical Tables,
" There were 31,700 females serving sentences in state prison for a violent offense on December 31, 2020, including 10,000 convicted of murder or nonnegligent manslaughter.
" Persons sentenced for drug possession accounted for 3% (33,700) of sentenced state prisoners at yearend 2020.
" More than 79% of Hispanic persons in state prison were serving time for a violent offense at yearend 2020, compared to 70% of Asian, Native Hawaiian, or Other Pacific Islander persons; 68% of black persons; 60% of American Indian or Alaska Native persons; and 55% of white persons.
"At yearend 2020, a larger share of white state prisoners had been sentenced for a property (18%) or drug (15%) offense than state prisoners of other racial or ethnic groups.
" More than half of the prisoners in 42 states were serving time for a violent offense at yearend 2020 (table 18).
" At yearend 2020, at least two-thirds of persons sentenced to prison in eight states (Alaska, California, Georgia, Maryland, Massachusetts, Montana, Oregon, and Rhode Island) were serving a sentence for a violent offense.
" Idaho (32%), South Dakota (27%), and Indiana (25%) were the states with the largest percentages of prisoners serving time for a drug offense."
E. Ann Carson, PhD. Prisoners In 2021 - Statistical Tables. Washington, DC: US Dept of Justice Bureau of Justice Statistics, December 2022, NCJ305125.