Few Americans fully appreciate just how many of their fellow citizens are ensnared in the criminal justice system.
Some may have heard that there are about 2.3 million people behind bars, but that figure tells only part of the story. Yes, in a stunning array of 1,719 state prisons, 102 federal prisons, 901 juvenile correctional facilities, 3,163 local jails and 76 Indian Country jails, as well as in military prisons, immigration detention facilities, civil commitment centers and prisons in the U.S. territories, we physically contain more human beings than any other country in the world. In addition to those actually locked up, there are another 840,000 Americans being supervised on parole and an additional 3.7 million people being monitored on probation.
Consider this: The world’s most populous city, Tokyo, and the U.S.‘s most populous state, California, have fewer residents combined than the up to 100 million U.S. citizens who now have a criminal record.