Huge Racial Disparity in Prisoners Serving Life Sentences

A new report from The Sentencing Project find that nearly 162,000 people in the United States are serving a life sentence – one of every nine people in prison. An additional 44,311 individuals are serving “virtual life” sentences of 50 years or more. Incorporating this category of life sentence, the total population serving a life or virtual life sentence reached 206,268 in 2016. This represents 13.9 percent of the prison population, or one of every seven people behind bars.

The report breaks down the data by race. According to the report, nearly one half of life and virtual life-sentenced prisoners are African American. In Alabama, Georgia, Illinois, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, and South Carolina two thirds or more are African American. The highest rate is in Maryland, where 75.6 percent of all prisoners serving life or virtual life sentences are Black.

In federal prisons, Blacks make up 58.9 percent of all inmates serving life or virtual life sentences.

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Get the JBHE Weekly Bulletin

Receive our weekly email newsletter delivered to your inbox

Latest News

Four Black Scholars Selected for Dean Positions

The dean appointments are Chukwuka Onwumechili at Howard University, Myra Bozeman at Sinclair Community College in Dayton, Ohio, Joan Tilghman at Coppin State University in Baltimore, and Omolola Eniola-Adefeso at the University of Illinois.

Voorhees University Launches Its First Doctor of Education Degree Program

The new doctor of education in leadership program will offer two specialized tracks for students, preparing them to become successful leaders in their chosen educational field. Students can choose to focus their studies on either PK-12 education or higher education administration.

Fielding Graduate University Honors Ronald Mason for Lifetime Achievements in HBCU Leadership

Ronald Mason has served as president of three HBCUs: Jackson State University, Southern University and A&M College, and the University of the District of Columbia, where he was the longest tenured president in the university's history.

Tuskegee Partners with UTHealth Houston for Accelerated Graduate Program in Biomedical Informatics

Tuskegee University has partnered with UTHealth to provide students with an accelerated graduate degree in biomedical informations. The "4+1" program will allow students to potentially earn a bachelor's degree, graduate certificate, and master's degree in just five years.

Featured Jobs