District of Columbia profile

The graphs on this page were created for our 50 State Incarceration Profiles. The District of Columbia criminal justice system is especially unique—after the Lorton Prison Complex was closed down in 2001, the District's prison population has been integrated into the federal Bureau of Prisons system. The District of Columbia's Department of Corrections currently operates two facilities that serve functions similar to local jails. While we don't (yet) have a good annual data source for prison growth after 2001, the data that does exist indicates that District of Columbia has the highest incarceration rate in the world.


Over time

graph showing the number of people in state prison and local jails per 100,000 residents in the District of Columbia from 1978 to 2015 You can also see the same graph expressed as numbers rather than as rates per 100,000.

The big picture

Pie chart showing that 8,200 of the District of Columbia residents are locked up in federal prisons, local jails and youth facilities

Pie chart showing that 20,000 of the District of Columbia residents are in various types of correctional facilities or under criminal justice supervision on probation or parole


Other research and materials on the District of Columbia

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