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Jail Inmates, 1987

NCJ Number
Date Published
December 1988
Mail questionnaires and follow-up telephone surveys were conducted of 1,135 jails in 866 jurisdictions to produce national estimates for the jail inmate population as of June 30, 1987.

Results indicate that at this time, local jails held approximately 295,873 persons, 8 percent more than the previous year. Overall, jail occupancy was 98 percent of rated capacity. The average daily jail population was 290,300, a 28-percent increase since 1983. During the year ending June 30, 1987, there were 17 million jail admissions and releases. Males accounted for the vast majority (92 percent) of jail inmates. Whites accounted for 52 percent of local jail populations, blacks for 42 percent, and other races for 1 percent. Hispanics accounted for 14 percent of all jail inmates. Of adults held in jail, 52 percent were unconvicted (awaiting arraignment or trial). The remainder included convicted inmates awaiting or serving a sentence or returned to jail for probation or parole violations. There were 358 jurisdictions, operating 611 jails with daily inmate populations of at least 100. These held 224,811 inmates or about 76 percent of all inmates in the country. In these, overall occupancy rate was 111 percent over rated capacity, inmates often were held for other authorities, and inmate deaths increased 13 percent over 1986. 11 tables.

Date Published: December 1, 1988