State and Federal Prison Populations in the US by Race, Gender, and Latinx Ethnicity

"Demographic characteristics among sentenced prisoners

"• At year-end 2018, an estimated 6% of sentenced white males in state and federal prisons were ages 18 to 24, compared to 12% of black and 10% of Hispanic male prisoners (table 9).

"• Three percent of male prisoners and 1.5% of female prisoners sentenced to more than one year in state or federal prison were age 65 or older at year-end 2018.

"• Seventeen percent of white males sentenced to more than one year in prison were age 55 or older as of year-end 2018, compared to 11% of black and 9% of Hispanic male prisoners.

"• The age group most likely to be imprisoned is those in their 30s (over 1,000 men or women imprisoned per 100,000 U.S. residents).

"• Together, state and federal correctional authorities held more than 1% of all male U.S. residents ages 20 to 54 (more than 1,000 per 100,000 residents) at year-end 2018 (table 10).

"• In 2018, the imprisonment rate of black residents (1,134 sentenced black prisoners per 100,000 black residents) was the lowest since 1989 (1,050 per 100,000).

"• The imprisonment rate for black females (88 per 100,000 black female residents) was 1.8 times as high as for white females (49 per 100,000 white female residents), while the imprisonment rate for black males (2,272 per 100,000 black male residents) was 5.8 times as high as for white males (392 per 100,000 white male residents).

"• Black males ages 18 to 19 were 12.7 times as likely to be imprisoned as white males of the same ages (figure 2), the highest black-to-white racial disparity of any age group in 2018.

"• Hispanic males ages 18 to 19 were 3.3 times as likely as white males of the same ages to be imprisoned at year-end 2018.

"• In 2018, the disparities in imprisonment rates between sentenced black and white females and between sentenced Hispanic and white females were lowest for those ages 25 to 49 (figure 3)."


E. Ann Carson, PhD. Prisoners In 2018. Washington, DC: US Dept of Justice Bureau of Justice Statistics, April 2020, NCJ253516.