Who populates the jails run by the state’s Department of Corrections? According to, 59 percent of inmates were sent to jail for crimes against persons, which include homicide, sexual assault, aggravated or simple assault, robbery, kidnapping, other sex offenses, and other offenses. The state says that only 16 percent of inmates have been committed for narcotics offenses; 81 percent of those are for the sale and distribution of narcotics.
Sixty percent of inmates are black, 23 percent are white, and 16 percent are Hispanic. Only 1 percent are Asian. The population is young: 36 percent are aged 30 or younger; the median age in all facilities is 35. Six percent are serving life sentences with parole eligibility and 38 percent have terms of 10 years or more. Seventy-eight are serving life sentences without parole.