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Racial disparity seen in jails and prisons throughout America

On Behalf of | Dec 9, 2019 | Criminal Defense |

The racial disparity in jails and prisons in Missouri and throughout America went down significantly between 2000 and 2016. In 2000, a black person was 15 times more likely to be an inmate than a white person. However, in 2016, a black person was only five times more likely than a white person to be in a state jail or prison. This was largely attributed to the fact that there was a significant drop in the number of people sent to jail or prison for drug crimes.

Furthermore, the report published by the Council on Criminal Justice found that the racial gap was closing among those on probation and obtaining parole. As of 2016, there were six black men in jail or prison for every white male in custody. There were two black women in custody for every white woman in a jail or prison in 2016.

Those who created the report say that they didn’t fully account for why minorities were more likely to be in custody than white individuals. Some say that this is the result of a bias on the part of judges, prosecutors and police officers. It is also possible that police spend more time in communities that are comprised mostly of minorities and that have higher levels of crime. Economic factors may also explain the racial disparity in American jails and prisons.

Individuals who are convicted of a crime face a variety of long-term consequences such as going to jail or being placed on probation. An attorney may take steps to help a person get a criminal charge dismissed or otherwise obtain a favorable outcome in his or her case. This might be done by having evidence suppressed before a trial or casting doubt on that evidence in court.