|Color Coding Key|
|GREEN||Ranked 1st for statistic|
|RED||Ranked last for statistic|
The United States' crime rate is paradoxicallly disproportionate to its incredibly high incarceration rate.
|Average firearms per 100 people||Homicides/ 100,000||Total # of adults in prison||Prisoners/ 100,000||Executions 2012||Death Penalty||Perception of Safety||Safety and security ranking|
UK numbers for England and Wales as listed by source. Scotland: 5.5; Northern Ireland: 21.9. For 2007.
For most recent year, 2010-13. Prison population rates per 100,000. The US rate for adults (excluding children) is about 1,000 per 100,000.
Percentage of respondents answering "yes" to the Gallup World Poll question, "Do you feel safe walking alone at night in the city or area where you live?" for 2007-11.
For 2013. Attempts to answer, "How does the personal safety of citizens and the national security of a nation relate to growth in per capita income and higher levels of wellbeing?" Uses the following wealth indicators (ordered by weight): group grievances, regugees and internally displaced persons, state sponsored political violence, theft, assault, safe walking home at night alone; and the following well-being indicators (ordered by weight): safe walking alone at night, express political opinion without fear or concern, group grievances, state sponsored political violence, demographic instability, refugees and internally displaced persons, human flight, assault, and civil war.
"Reseachers Blast U.S. Prison Policies," Michael Doyle
McclatchyDC, April 2014
From a new study by the The National Research Council. The rate of incarceration in the United States was fairly stable until 1972. Between 1972 and 2000 it increased dramatically. The increase has slowed, but the number of adults in the U.S. who are in prison or jail is 2.2 million, the largest prison population in the world, followed distantly by the Russian Federation.
- In 1972, 161 people per 100,000 in the U.S. were incarcerated in prisons and jails.
- In 2007, 767 per 100,000 were incarcerated
The numbers in the study are not new (see chart, above) but the findings support the concern about the United States' level of incarceration. "We are concerned that the United States is past the point where the number of people in prison can be justified by social benefits," said committee chair Jeremy Travis, president of John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York City.
The study authors attribute this growth to:
- mandatory sentencing,
- long sentences for violent and repeat offenses and,
- the "war on drugs."
The increase is disproportionately high for African Americans: In 2010, the imprisonment rate for African-Americans was 4.6 times that for whites.
"Millions in the Slammer..." Nomi Prins
"Millions in the Slammer: We Must Reverse America's Zeal to Incarcerate" from The Women's International Perspective, December 30, 2007.
Reports that the federal prison system has:
- most inmates of any country
- 11 percent for violent crimes
- highest incarceration rates
- 1/3 of prisoners are non-violent, 1st offenders
- growing 4 percent per year
- 3/4 of prisoners are 1st offenders with no history of violence
- 55 percent incarcerated are there for drugs
- almost every 1 in 136 in U.S. incarcerated
- incarcerated, parolees and those on probation total 7.1 million
Wolff et al (Human Development Index note) also used persons per police officer, reports of police brutality per 100,000, death row inmates (zero in most countries; low thousands in US), percent households with handgun, murders per year by handgun (50 or less in most countries; about 10,000 in US), murder rate for males 15-24/100,000, rape/100,000, armed robbery/100,000.
There is too much variation among countries statistics for extensive comparisons
|One study of robberies per 100,000 found||2003|
"Crime and Punishment in the U.S. & Europe" Julia Wobbe
From p. 3, CJLF Advisory 26:2, Spring 2008, Criminal Justice Legal Foundation. Online copy of report can be found at:
International Herald Tribune, April 23, 2008<\p>
- Causes of high US rate: more violent crime, harsher sentences, racial discrimination, war on drugs, lack of social safety net, availability of guns.
- US murder rates are quite high, while assault, burglary, and robbery are comparable or lower than other countries.
- US has harsh sentences for minor property crimes like passing bad checks.
- US imprisonment for drugs is far higher than other countries.
- The US imprisons slightly fewer people than some European countries, but keeps them in prison far longer (16 months for burglary; Canada 5 months, England 7 months).
- Minorities in Canada, Britain, and Australia incarcerated at rates similar to or higher than US.
- Locking people up prevents crime and saves money, if the "right people" are locked up.
"What American's Can't Afford," Families Agains Mandatory Minimums, email newsletter
November 9, 2010
Children's Defense Fund, email newsletter
June 9, 2008
"According to the most recent data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 3,006 children and teens were killed by firearms in 2005, the first increase since 1994 and the first rise in gun deaths since Congress allowed the Assault Weapons Ban to expire in 2004."
"Supreme Court's Global Influence is Waning" Adam Liptak
New York Times, September 17, 2008
According to Liptak, America's judicial rulings has seen a decline in its propensity to influence other courts around the world. Namely, Austrailia, who had cited decisions by American courts over 200 times in 1995, had reduced that number to 72 times ten years later. Litpak suggests that there is ample evidence to show that this is the case not just for Australia, but worldwide.
Homicide rate for males aged 15 to 124 per 100,000 males
Survey of households on crime victimization
Percent of households with a handgun or any firearm
Death row inmates