It’s not all bad news, though. The researchers also report that there was a decrease in overall adults supervised by correctional systems — meaning included in community supervision or parole. In 2014, there were “about 52,200 fewer offenders than at year-end 2013.”
Their report found that just seven jurisdictions “accounted for almost half of the U.S. correctional population at year-end 2014,” with Texas topping the list with 699,300 offenders. Overall, “about one in 36 adults in the United States was under some form of correctional supervision at year-end 2014.”
Numerous explanations have been offered for this high rate of incarceration. As The Intercept reported earlier this month, one private prison executive offered his own theory at a recent investment bankers conference.
“The reality is, we are a very affluent country, we have loose borders, and we have a bad education system,” said Shayn March, a vice president at private prison firm Geo Group. “And all that adds up to a significant amount of correctional needs, which, thankfully, we’ve been able to help the country out with and states with by providing a lower cost solution.”