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BJS Releases New Tool for Measuring Prison, Jail Population Trends

Prison population counts and other data for correctional facilities are now easily accessible online via a new feature on the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) website. The Key Statistics data analysis tool released yesterday will provide access to trend data from BJS's core collections on U.S. correctional facilities including statistics on offenders held in state prisons, federal prisons, and local jails, and those supervised in the community through probation or parole agencies. Trend data on executions are also included. Each […]

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Tracking Tribal Jail Populations

Crime on American Indian reservations decreased in 2013, according to a new report from the federal Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS). The annual report tracks the number of inmates in tribal jails, as well as the number of American Indians and Alaska Natives incarcerated in jails nationally. A total of 2,287 inmates were confined in the 79 tribal facilities that reported to BJS, according to the report, a 3.3 percent drop from the year before. About 10,400 American Indian and […]

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Report: Kids Do Most of Their Fighting at School

School-aged children were more likely to face nonfatal violence at school than away from school in 2013, according to a new report by the federal Bureau of Justice Statistics. The annual report includes data on school crime and safety drawn from several national surveys. The rate of violent victimization at school (37 per 1,000 students) far outpaced that of violent victimization away from school (15 per 1,000 students), according to the report. “This difference was driven primarily by higher rates […]

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BJS: Most Police Departments Using Cameras

About one-third of all local police departments used body-worn cameras for at least some officers in 2013, according to a survey by the federal Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS). The 2013 survey was the edition of the BJS Law Enforcement Management and Administrative Statistics survey was the first time the agency asked about body-worn cameras, so there is no indication of how those results compare to previous years. Current figures may actually be much higher, because in the time since […]

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BJS: Jail Populations Shrinking

Local jail populations continued their decline during the first half of 2014, according to an annual report by the federal Bureau of Justice Statistics. There was an estimated 744,600 inmates in city and county jails at midyear 2014, according to the report, down about five percent from the peak year of 2008. About 6 in 10 inmates were not convicted, but were in jail awaiting court action, “a rate unchanged since 2005,” the report notes. The report notes that the […]

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A Congressional Blow to Science in Criminal Justice?

The House subcommittee that oversees U.S. Justice Department spending has taken the unusual step of proposing to eliminate line-item budgets for the National Institute of Justice (NIJ) and the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS)–the department’s main research and statistics agencies. In a proposal that will go to the full House Appropriations Committee tomorrow, the subcommittee suggests that the two agencies be funded instead out of an existing “set-aside” of money in which three percent of Department of Justice (DOJ) grants […]

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Will GOP Give Obama What He Wants for Criminal Justice?

The White House would like to see the U.S. Justice Department get a small budget increase for the year starting October 1, but it remains to be seen whether a Republican-dominated Congress will give President Barack Obama what he wants. By Washington, D.C., standards, Justice is a medium-sized federal agency, with nearly $29 billion to spend in the budget the President sent to Capitol Hill yesterday. Some major agencies like the FBI and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and […]

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U.S. Correctional Population Shrinking at a Snail’s Pace

The nation's correctional population continues to drop, but the rate of decline has slowed to a trickle, according to a report released today by the federal Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS). The annual report, which tracked the size and change in total correctional population during the year 2013, is based on several BJS data collections. The overall correctional population — which includes those in jails and prisons, as well as under the supervision of the correction system — dropped 0.6 […]

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BJS Reports Uptick in Jail Deaths

Deaths in jail may be on the rise, according to a new report released today by the federal Bureau of Justice Statistics. During 2012, 958 inmates died in jail, according to the report, up 8 percent from the 889 deaths in 2011. The report also examined deaths in state prisons, which remained nearly unchanged between 2011 (3,353 deaths) and 2012 (3,351). However, the population of inmates at state prisons decreased in 2012, which means the mortality rate actually increased about […]