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Publication Prisoners in 2003

Paige M. Harrison, Allen J. Beck, Ph.D., Bureau of Justice Statistics

November 4, 2004    NCJ 205335

Reports the number of persons in State and Federal prisons at yearend, compares the increase in the prison population during 2003 with that of the previous year, and gives the prison growth rates since 1995. The report also provides the number of male and female prisoners on December 31, 2003. It includes incarceration rates for the States and the 5 highest and 5 lowest jurisdictions for selected characteristics, such as the growth rate, number of prisoners held, and incarceration rates. Tables present data on prison capacities and the use of local jails and privately operated prisons. Estimates are provided on the number of sentenced prisoners by gender, race, and Hispanic origin.


  • During 2003, the number of inmates under State jurisdiction increased by 20,370.
  • On December 31, 2003, State prisons were estimated to be at capacity or 16% above capacity, while Federal prisons were operating at 39% above capacity.
  • At yearend 2003, 101,179 women were in State or Federal prisons - 6.9% of all prison inmates.

Part of the Prisoners Series

Press Release
Full report (PDF 602K)
ASCII file (33K)
Spreadsheet (Zip format 21K)
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National Prisoner Statistics (NPS) Program

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