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September 16, 2008

JPI fact sheet suggests less prisoners = less violent crime

Responding to yesterday's good news about lower crime rates (blogged here), the Justice Policy Institute released an interesting little fact sheet digging into the numbers a bit.  This JPI fact sheet, available here, includes this significant insight: 

Regions with the lowest incarceration rates experienced the largest drops in violent crime.

The Northeast region experienced the greatest drop in violent crime, and also has the lowest incarceration rates in the country.  The southern region has the highest incarceration rates and witnessed a rise in violent crimes — the only part of the country to not experience a drop in crime.

Obviously, one set of data points does not a proof make.  But regional variations in crime and punishment within the United States are rarely examined closely, and this JPI fact-sheet suggests that there might be some interesting stories to mine from the data.

September 16, 2008 at 02:08 PM | Permalink

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