Louisiana has the greatest number of residents in prison compared to other states

Louisiana has the greatest number of incarcerated individuals per capita out of all U.S. states, according to new data from the Sentencing Project.

With 680 people incarcerated out of every 100,000 residents, Louisiana’s prison population totals 31,584, with 38,822 on probation and 32,196 on parole.

Other issues quantified in the Sentencing Project numbers include racial disparities, the number of juveniles in custody and spending on states’ corrections systems. The nonprofit group obtains its data from a variety of sources, including the U.S. Bureau of Justice Statistics, U.S. Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention and National Association of State Budget Officers.

The United States has the highest incarceration rate of any nation in the world, with 2.2 million people behind bars, according to the Sentencing Project. The number of Americans in prison or jail has increased fivefold over the last four decades, the researchers found.

Changes in public policies and laws have been driving this increase, the study says. The result has been serious overcrowding problems in prisons and added financial burdens for states, according to the data.

Incarceration Rates by State

Rank (Highest to Lowest Imprisonment Rate) State Imprisonment Rate (per 100,000 Residents) Prison Population Probation Population Parole Population
1 Louisiana 680 31,584 38,822 32,196
2 Oklahoma 639 25,338 42,052 1,781
3 Mississippi 636 18,915 27,820 9,392
4 Arkansas 586 17,713 33,622 23,782
5 Arizona 558 40,951 77,129 7,537
6 Texas 529 154,479 371,361 109,151
7 Kentucky 516 23,082 44,480 16,338
8 Georgia 507 54,113 419,993 21,067
9 Idaho 475 8,571 33,002 5,102
10 Florida 444 96,009 209,714 4,419
11 Montana 440 4,723 9,358 1,276
12 Ohio 430 50,338 233,580 20,703
13 (tie) South Dakota 428 3,797 5,631 2,968
13 (tie) Wyoming 428 2,479 5,097 900
15 Missouri 424 26,038 42,526 17,623
16 Virginia 422 36,091 62,443 1,709
17 Alabama 419 20,595 51,961 9,358
18 Nevada 413 12,840 13,625 5,033
19 Indiana 399 26,969 111,156 7,073
20 Tennessee 384 26,349 60,622 11,132
21 Delaware 382 3,735 15,010 368
22 (tie) Michigan 381 38,053 153,345 15,722
22 (tie) West Virginia 381 6,800 6,196 3,690
24 Wisconsin 378 22,039 43,542 21,095
25 Pennsylvania 355 45,485 180,901 111,185
26 (tie) Oregon 353 14,943 38,936 24,539
26 (tie) South Carolina 353 18,295 32,697 4,565
28 Kansas 342 9,965 16,909 5,282
29 Colorado 341 19,785 81,125 10,237
30 New Mexico 316 6,634 12,352 2,708
31 North Carolina 313 33,042 82,199 13,802
32 California 310 122,417 233,046 95,148
33 Maryland 305 18,476 71,352 10,338
34 Illinois 302 38,259 86,538 28,794
35 Iowa 293 9,260 29,152 6,414
36 Nebraska 289 5,596 14,255 985
37 Washington 250 19,184 76,349 11,663
38 Connecticut 245 8,751 40,307 3,548
39 Alaska 244 1,782 2,491 1,563
40 North Dakota 231 1,767 6,297 904
41 New York 224 43,439 98,685 44,572
42 Hawaii 215 3,037 19,830 1,666
43 New Jersey 210 18,613 139,498 15,005
44 Utah 209 6,662 12,514 3,781
45 New Hampshire 197 2,691 3,914 2,436
46 Vermont 182 1,137 4,138 861
47 Minnesota 176 9,982 98,746 7,048
48 Rhode Island 156 1,656 21,927 451
49 Maine 146 1,967 6,709 20
50 Massachusetts 133 7,503 57,261 1,423

Source: The Sentencing Project



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