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Revised 10/3/2000, th

U.S. Department of Justice
Office of Justice Programs

Bureau of Justice Statistics

Special Report
December 1999, NCJ 175688

Women Offenders
Lawrence A. Greenfeld
and Tracy L. Snell
BJS Statisticians

Highlights

Population estimates from the Census
Bureau for July 1, 1998, indicate that
women account for more than half the
population age 10 or older:
Both genders 230,861,000 100.0%
Females
119,010,000
51.6
Males
111,851,000
48.4
Table 1

The racial and ethnic composition of
the general population age 10 or older
varies slightly when males and females
are compared. Non-Hispanic black
females outnumber non-Hispanic black
males by nearly 1.9 million, accounting
for more than a quarter of the total
difference in the number of males and
females in the general population.
Minorities compose a slightly higher
percentage of the female population
(26.2%) than of the male population
(25.9%). Nearly a third of the disparity
in the number of females versus males
in the general population is accounted
for by the larger number of minority
females.
The average age of females in the
general population is about 2½ years
older than that of males. The largest
age disparity, about 3 years, is found
among black non-Hispanic females
compared to black non-Hispanic
males. Among females, Hispanic
women have the lowest average age,
29.6 years, while white non-Hispanic
women have the highest, 39.6 years.

Women offenders
Number
As a percent
of each category

Violent
offenders
2,135,000
14%

All
arrestees
3,171,000
22%

Convicted felony
defendants
160,500
16%

Correctional
populations
951,900
16%

ù Based on the self-reports of victims
of violence, women account for about
14% of violent offenders & an annual
average of about 2.1 million violent
female offenders.

of arrest among juvenile females was
nearly twice the adult female rate.

ù Nearly 2 out of 3 victims had a prior
relationship with the female offender.

ù Women under supervision by
justice system agencies were
mothers of an estimated 1.3 million
minor children.

ù Since 1990 the number of female
defendants convicted of felonies in
State courts has grown at more than
ù Male offending equals about 1
2 times the rate of increase in male
violent offender for every 9 males age defendants.
10 or older, a per capita rate 6 times
ù In 1998 an estimated 950,000
that of women.
women were under the care, custody,
ù Three out of four violent female
or control of correctional agencies &
offenders committed simple assault.
probation or parole agencies supervising 85% of these offenders in the
ù An estimated 28% of violent female
community. The total equals a rate
offenders are juveniles.
of about 1 woman involved with the
ù Three out of four victims of violent
criminal justice system for every 109
female offenders were women.
adult women in the U.S. population.

ù An estimated 4 in 10 women
committing violence were perceived
by the victim as being under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs at the
time of the crime.
ù The per capita rate of murder
offending by women in 1998 was the
lowest recorded since 1976; the rate
at which women commit murder has
been declining since 1980.
ù In 1998 there were an estimated
3.2 million arrests of women &
accounting for about 22% of all
arrests that year. The per capita rate

ù Nearly 6 in 10 women in State
prisons had experienced physical or
sexual abuse in the past; just over a
third of imprisoned women had been
abused by an intimate in the past;
and just under a quarter reported
prior abuse by a family member.
ù About 84,000 women were
confined in prisons in 1998. In 1996
the average sentence and time
served for women were shorter than
for males with equivalent offenses.

Number of violent offenders per 1,000 residents
160

Gender, race, and Hispanic origin
in the U.S. population
Percent of U.S. population
age 10 or older, 1998
Females
Males
White
Hispanic
Non-Hispanic
Black
Hispanic
Non-Hispanic
Asian/Pacific Islander
Hispanic
Non-Hispanic
American Indian/Alaska Native
Hispanic
Non-Hispanic
Total population

Women (rate times 7)
120

8.8%
73.8

9.5%
74.1

0.6%
12.1

0.6%
11.2

0.2%
3.6

0.2%
3.5

0.1%
0.7

0.1%
0.7

Men
80

40

119,010,000 111,851,000

0

Table 2

Violent crimes committed by females and males
Average annual number
of offenders reported
by victims, 1993-97
Offense
Female
Male
All
2,135,000
13,098,000
Sexual assault
10,000
442,000
Robbery
157,000
2,051,000
Aggravated assault
435,000
3,419,000
Simple assault
1,533,000
7,187,000

During an average year, based on the
period 1993-97, victims of violence
attributed the crimes they experienced
to an estimated 2.1 million female
violent offenders and 13.1 million male
violent offenders.

1993
1994
1995
1996
1997

135
140
124
107
99

19
20
19
19
15

1994

Nearly 3 in 4 violent
victimizations committed
by female offenders were
simple assaults; just over
half the violence of male
offenders is described as
simple assault.

Women as
a percent
of violent
offenders
14%
2
7
11
18

The rate of male violent
offending translated into
about 1 violent offender for every 9
males age 10 or older in the general
population; the rate of female violent
offending was equal to about 1 violent
offender for every 56 females age 10
or older.
Table 3

Violent victimizers

Offending rates:
Number of offenders
per 1,000 residents
Male
Female

1993

Per capita rates of offending among
both males and females decreased
from the peak rates recorded in 1994.
Rates of committing violent crime in
1997 were 29% lower for males and
25% lower among females.

Ratio of
offending
rates,
male:female
7.1
7.0
6.4
5.7
6.5

Characteristics of violent female
offenders
Table 4

About 1 out of 7 violent offenders
described by victims was a female.
Women accounted for 1 in 50 offenders committing a violent sex offense
including rape and sexual assault, 1 in
14 robbers, 1 in 9 offenders committing
aggravated assault, and more than
1 in 6 offenders described as having
committed a simple assault.

Violent
offenses

1996

1997
Fig. 2

More than half of female violent
offenders were described by victims
as white, and just over a third were
described as black. About 1 in 10 were
described as belonging to another race
(Asian, Pacific Islander, Native Hawaiian, American Indian, Aleut, or
Eskimo).
Black and white offenders accounted
for nearly equal proportions of women
committing robbery and aggravated
assault; however, simple assault
offenders were more likely to be
described as white.
Among violent female offenders, 53%
committed the offense while alone, and
40% were with others, all of whom
were female. Among male offenders,
47% were alone, and 51% were with
other males when the offense
occurred. About 8% of violent female
offenders committed their offense
together with at least one male
offender; by contrast, about 1% of male
violent offenders committed the offense
in the company of a female offender.
Age of offender
Under 12

White
Black

Robbery

12-14

Other

15-17

Aggravated
assault

18-20

Simple
assault

30 or older

21-29
0%
20%
40%
Percent of violent female offenders

0%
20% 40% 60%
Percent of female offenders

Fig. 3
Fig. 1

2 Women Offenders

1995

Victims of violence provided very
similar descriptions of their perceptions
of the ages of both female and male
violent offenders. For each age group
& juveniles, young adults, and those
30 or older & victims reported little
variation in offender age between the
two genders.

of male violent offenders were
estimated to have known the victim.
Victims who were intimates accounted
for an identical percentage of both
male and female violent offenders.
Victim-offender relationship

Offender's use of alcohol or drugs
at the time of the violence
Neither

Intimate

Juveniles accounted for about 28% of
female violent offenders, nearly identical to the juvenile percentage (26%)
found among violent male offenders.

to account for about 1 in 8 violent
offenders in the workplace and 1 in 6
violent offenders committing the
offense in the victim’s home.

Any
Female victim
Male victim

Relative

Both
Alcohol only

Acquaintance

Female offenders
Male offenders

Drugs only
Stranger

Characteristics of victims
of female violent offenders
Overall, female-to-female violence
accounted for 11% of all violent offenders described by victims. An additional
3% of violent offenders were women
who attacked males.
Percentage of all violent victimizations
reported by victims

Gender of victim
Total
Female
Male

Gender of violent offender
Female
Male Total
14%
11
3

86%
26
60

100%
37
63
Table 5

Violent offenders most often victimized
persons of the same gender. More
than 3 out of 4 female offenders had a
female victim; about 7 out of 10 males
had a male victim. About 29% of violent offenders had a victim of a different
gender; 9 out of 10 of these offenders
were males with female victims.

20%
40%
60%
Percent of female
violent offenders

Female offenders
Male offenders

Where offenders committed
violence and use of drugs or alcohol
Location of violent offense
At/near victim's home

Offenders
Male
Female
Use of a firearm, knife,
blunt object
Victim seriously injured
Hospital treatment for victim
Average loss to victim

15%
5%
5%
$595

28%
8%
6%
$943
Table 6

School

The consequences of male violence
were generally more serious for the
victim in terms of weapon use, injury,
and out-of-pocket losses to the victim.

Open area

Other

Female
Male
0%
10% 20% 30%
Percent of violent offenders

Acquaintance

Fig. 7

There were few differences between
male and female violent offenders in
When women committed their violent
victim perceptions of drug or alcohol
offense against men, 35% of the
use at the time of the offense. About 4
offenders attacked an intimate or
in 10 male and female violent offenders
relative. By contrast, 8% of victimizawere reported by victims to have been
tions of other females involved
intimates or family members. For both using alcohol, drugs, or both at the time
male and female victims, the proportion of the offense.
of female offenders attacking strangers
Consequences of female violence
was the same.

Commercial area

Other relative

20% 40% 60% 80%
Percent of violent offenders

Fig. 5

Work

Victim-offender relationship
Intimate

0%
0%

Male offenders were more likely than
female offenders (28% to 15%) to have
used a weapon such as a blunt object,
knife, or firearm in the commission of
the violent offense.

Fig. 6

Stranger
0% 20% 40% 60% 80%
Percent of violent offenders
Fig. 4

Male and female violent offenders
differed substantially in their relationship to those they victimized. An
estimated 62% of female violent
offenders had a prior relationship with
the victim as an intimate, relative, or
acquaintance. By contrast, about 36%

For nearly half of female offenders,
the violent offense took place either
at or near the victim’s home or at
school. Less than a third of male
offenders carried out their crimes
in these locations.
According to victim self-reports, female
offenders account for about 1 in 4
offenders committing violence at a
school. Women were also estimated

Serious injuries, such as broken bones,
being knocked unconscious, concussions, knife wounds, or gunshot
wounds, were slightly more associated
with male offenders; however, the likelihood of hospital treatment for the
victims of male and female offenders
was about the same. An estimated
865,000 violent offenders were responsible for crimes against victims whose
injuries resulted in hospital treatment;

Women Offenders

3

women accounted for about 12% of
these offenders.
The largest out-of-pocket cost item for
victims of female violence was medical
expenses which averaged $1,127,
nearly $550 less than victims of male
violence experienced. Lost pay due to
injury to victims of female violence
averaged $311 and lost pay for court
appearances and other reasons cost
victims an average of $513 when the
offender was a female & both of these
were less than half the losses victims
experienced when the offender was a
male.
Women who murder
Since 1993 both male and female rates
of committing murder have declined.
Rates of committing murder in 1998
were the lowest since statistics were
first collected in 1976. The estimated
rate for murder offending by women in
1998 was 1.3 per 100,000 & about 1
murderer for every 77,000 women.
The male rate of murder offending in
1998 was 11.5 per 100,000, about 1
murderer for every 8,700 males.

against an intimate or family member;
among the 400,000 murders committed
by men over the same period, 20%
were against family members or
intimates.
An estimated 1 in 14 murders by a
female offender and 1 in 4 murders by
a male offender was committed against
a victim who was a stranger to the
offender.
Victim
13 or younger
14-17
18-24
25-34
35-49
50-64
65 or older
Number,
1976-97

Female murderers
White
Black
0.6%
0.6%
6.4
5.3
23.9
26.9
31.0
36.5
27.2
23.1
8.8
6.3
2.2
1.4
26,485

Spouse
Ex-spouse
Child/stepchild
Other family
Boyfriend/girlfriend
Acquaintance
Stranger
Number,
1976-97

Murderers
Female
Male
28.3%
1.5
10.4
6.7
14.0
31.9
7.2
59,996

6.8%
0.5
2.2
6.9
3.9
54.6
25.1
395,446

Handgun
Other firearm
Knife
Blunt object
All other weapons

Table 9

35,357
Table 8

Parents who kill
Between 1976 and 1997 parents
and stepparents murdered nearly
11,000 children. Mothers and
stepmothers committed about half
of these child murders. Sons and
stepsons accounted for 52% of
those killed by mothers and 57%
of those killed by fathers. Mothers
were responsible for a higher share
of children killed during infancy
while fathers were more likely to
have been responsible for the
murders of children age 8 or older.

20

Men
15

Women (rate times 5)
10

5

Table 7

The victim-offender relationship
differed substantially between female
and male murderers. Of the 60,000
murders committed by women between
1976 and 1997 just over 60% were
4 Women Offenders

Murderers
Female
Male
42%
51%
11
16
31
18
4
6
12
9

Just over half of women committing
murder and two-thirds of males
committing murder used a firearm.
Female offenders were substantially
more likely than male murderers to
have used a knife or other sharp object
to commit the crime.

Between 1976 and 1997, juveniles
accounted for just over 6% of the
murders committed by female offenders, or approximately 4,000 murders.
In 1976 there were an estimated 226
juvenile female murderers compared to
an estimated 153 in 1997. The only
group of women for whom the rate of
murder offending has not continued to
decrease are those age 18-24. The
The 1998 rate of committing murder by
per capita rate of committing murder
women was just over 40% of the rate in
for women of this age reached its
1976. Since 1980 rates for women
lowest point in 1995, and by 1997 had
have been steadily declining. For male
climbed 25%.
offending, the peak rate occurred in
1991, with 20.7 murderers per 100,000
males (about 1 murderer for every
4,800 males); the rate in 1998 was just
Number of murderers per 100,000 residents
over half of what it had been in 1991.
25

Victim

Nearly 6 in 10 female murderers are
black. The age distribution of white
and black female murderers is quite
similar, though among older offenders
(50 or older) black females account for
less than half of female murderers.

0
1976

1980

1985

1990

1995

1998
Fig. 8

Arrests
In 1998 there were an estimated 3.2
million arrests of women, accounting
for about a fifth of all arrests by law
enforcement agencies. Women were
about 17% of those arrested for the
Part I violent crimes (murder, rape,
robbery, and aggravated assault) and
29% of those arrested for Part I
property crimes (burglary, larceny, and
motor-vehicle theft). An estimated
22% of all female arrests (Part I and
Part II) were of juveniles & about
700,000 juvenile female arrests in
1998. Juvenile female arrestees
accounted for a higher percentage of
women arrested for motor vehicle theft,
liquor law violations, and vandalism.

Arrests of females, 1998
Arrests of females
1998
Percent of all arrests
Total arrests

Female arrest rate per
100,000 female residents
Juvenile
Adult

3,170,520

22%

4,630

2,377

Violent offenses
Murder
Robbery
Aggravated assault

113,877
1,959
12,130
99,490

17%
11
10
20

126
1
19
106

91
2
9
80

Property offenses
Burglary
Larceny
Motor vehicle theft

521,894
41,177
453,277
23,585

29%
13
35
16

1,109
85
953
61

341
27
297
14

Drug offenses

272,073

18%

186

235

Driving under the influence

219,514

16%

24

208

Note: Violent offenses, which include rape, and property offenses are the Part I offenses
In the FBI Uniform Crime Reports. Total arrests includes Part I and Part II offenses.
Table 10

Felony convictions of women in State courts, 1990-96

The numbers of arrests in 1998 translate into about 1 arrest for every 22
female juveniles (age 10-17) and 1
arrest for every 42 adult women (age
18 or older). For Part I violent
crimes, there was 1 arrest of a female
juvenile for every 794 girls in the
general population and 1 arrest of an
adult female for every 1,099 adult
women residents. Larceny, the offense
category with the most arrests, equaled
about 1 arrest for every 105 girls
under age 18 and 1 arrest for every
337 women age 18 or older.

Estimated number of women convicted of felonies in State courts
Percent change,
1990
1992
1994
1996
1990-96
Total

112,800

120,550

131,404

160,470

42%

Violent felonies
Murder
Rape/sexual assault
Robbery
Aggravated assault
Other violent

10,428
1,051
202
3,047
5,043
1,085

12,313
1,205
375
3,142
6,152
1,440

13,936
1,289
630
2,854
6,906
2,256

13,509
1,005
442
2,920
7,786
1,356

30%
-4
119
-4
54
25

Property felonies
Burglary
Larceny
Fraud

48,206
5,593
20,728
21,885

52,230
5,830
22,179
24,221

53,649
6,603
22,136
24,910

69,536
6,847
28,786
33,902

44%
22
39
55

Drug felonies
Trafficking
Possession

43,000
24,562
18,438

42,047
23,529
18,518

46,468
25,561
20,907

59,027
33,005
26,022

37%
34
41

In 1998 there were more than a quarter
million female drug arrests, accounting
Other felonies
11,166
13,959
17,351
18,399
65%
for about 18% of all arrests for drug law Note: Murder includes nonnegligent manslaughter; larceny includes motor vehicle theft;
violations. Drug arrest rates in 1998
and fraud include forgery and embezzlement. Details may not equal totals because of rounding.
were 1 for every 538 juvenile females
Table 11
in the resident population and 1 for
Female defendants in State courts
had not been charged with a violent
every 426 adult women residents.
offense.
Women accounted for about 16% of all
Per capita arrest rates for Part I violent felons convicted in State courts in
State courts have recorded substantial
crimes among juvenile females (17 and 1996. Women were 8% of convicted
growth in the number of female defenyounger) and among young adult
violent felons, 23% of property felons,
dants convicted of felonies. Between
females (18-24) have risen substanand 17% of drug felons. Women
1990 and 1996, the number of contially from the early 1980's. The
defendants accounted for 41% of all
victed female defendants grew at 2ë
juvenile arrest rate for violent offenses felons convicted of forgery, fraud, and
times the rate of increase among male
in 1995 was about 2ë times the rate
embezzlement. The majority of male
defendants.
in 1985. However, juvenile rates have and female felony defendants in the 75
declined in each year since 1995.
largest counties in the United States
For women defendants convicted in
By contrast, young adult female rates
were either charged with violence or
State courts, nearly 90% of the
of arrest for violence continue to climb
were recidivists. An estimated 27% of increase in the number of violent felons
with the 1997 rate about 80% above
male and 42% of female felony defenwas accounted for by aggravated
the rate 10 years earlier and at the
dants in State courts in large counties
assault, perhaps reflecting increased
highest level recorded.
had no history of prior convictions and

Women Offenders

5

Revised 10/3/2000, th

Trends in felony convictions
of women and men, 1990-96
Percent change in the number
of felony convictions, 1990-96
Felonies Total
Females
Males
All
Violent
Property
Drug
Other

20%
14
6
27
46

42%
30
44
37
65

17%
12
-2
25
44
Table 12

prosecution of women for domestic
violence. More than half of the
increase in the number of female
defendants convicted of property
felonies was attributable to rising
numbers of those convicted of forgery,
fraud, or embezzlement.
Thirty-seven percent of women
convicted of a felony in State courts
in 1996 had been charged with a drug
offense, about the same proportion of
all convicted felons as in 1990. Over
the period 1990-96, the number of drug
trafficking convictions grew by 34%
and the number of convictions for drug
possession increased 41%.
Adjudication outcomes

About two-thirds of both female and
male defendants pleaded guilty.
Small percentages of both were
found guilty after a bench or jury
trial. About 3 in 10 of both were
acquitted or were dismissed. The
apparently larger share of women
than men charged with a violent
felony and gaining an acquittal or
dismissal merits further study.
Adjudication outcomes
for felony defendants

Percent of
defendants
Female
Male

Total, all felonies
Pleaded guilty
Found guilty
Dismissed/acquitted

100%
66
2
31

100%
66
5
30

Violent felonies
Pleaded guilty
Found guilty
Dismissed/acquitted

100%
45
3
52

100%
55
7
38

Property felonies
Pleaded guilty
Found guilty
Dismissed/acquitted

100%
73
2
25

100%
67
4
28

Drug felonies
Pleaded guilty
Found guilty
Dismissed/acquitted

100%
70
2
28

100%
70
4
26
Table 13

For every
Offenses of women on probation or in jail or prison
category of
major crime
Most
Percent of women offenders
for the period
serious offense*
Probation Local jails State prisons Federal prisons
1990-96 &
9%
12%
28%
7%
Violent offenses
Homicide
1
1
11
1
violent,
property, drugs, Property offenses
44%
34%
27%
12%
and other
Larceny
11
15
9
1
Fraud
26
12
10
10
felonies & the
rate of increase Drug offenses
19%
30%
34%
72%
in the number
24%
11%
8%
Public-order offenses 27%
of convicted
Driving while
female defen18
7
2
0
intoxicated
dants has
Number of women
outpaced the
offenders
721,400
27,900
75,200
9,200
changes in the
*Based on the offenders’ most serious offense. Overall offense categories
number of
are shown with selected detail categories containing larger percentages
convicted male of women offenders.
defendants.
Table 15
Property felon6% of those in prisons, and 12% of
ies, in particular, have evidenced a
very large disparity in rates of change; those on parole.
from 1990 to 1996, the number of
Population growth has occurred in
males convicted of property felonies
each component of corrections. The
dropped about -2% while convicted
number of women per capita involved
female defendants increased 44%.
in corrections overall has grown 48%
since 1990, compared to a 27%
Female corrections populations
increase in the number of men per
In 1998 there were an estimated
capita. Between 1990 and 1998 the
951,900 women under the care,
per capita number of women under
custody, or control of adult criminal
probation supervision climbed 40%; the
justice authorities. This translates into jail rate grew 60%; the imprisonment
a rate of about 1 out of every 109 adult rate increased 88%; and the per capita
women in the United States & nearly
number of offenders under parole
1% of adult women & having some
supervision was up 80%.
kind of correctional status on any given
day. About 85% of the female correcOffense composition among women
tions population were being supervised with a corrections status varies with
in the community, and 15% were
the type of status. Violence and drug
confined in prisons and jails.
trafficking, for example, account for
17% of women on probation, 24% of
Women offenders account for about
those sentenced to local jails, 46% of
16% of the total corrections population those incarcerated in State prisons,
in 1998 (5,890,300). Women represent and 65% of those confined in Federal
about 21% of those on probation,
prisons. By contrast, DWI offenses
11% of those in local jails, just under
account for 18% of women on probation, 7% of those
1 woman in ____ adult women in the United States
sentenced to local
had this correctional status:
jails, and 2% of
those held in State
Any correctional
status
Probation
Jail
Prison
Parole
prisons.
1985

227

267

4,762

4,167

4,762

1990

161

202

2,632

2,326

2,273

1995
1996
1997
1998

124
120
115
109

159
157
151
144

1,961
1,852
1,754
1,628

1,587
1,471
1,408
1,230

1,493
1,316
1,333
1,262
Table 14

6 Women Offenders

Most violent female
offenders are not
confined: there are
nearly 65,000

The offense composition
among women in State
prison has been changing.
The proportion who had
been convicted of violent
and property crimes has
been decreasing while the
proportion of drug and
public-order offenders has
been growing.

Trends in most serious offenses

Violent

Property

Children of women under correctional
supervision, 1998
Estimated number
Women
Women offenders
offenders with minor children
Total
869,600
Probation
721,400
Jail
63,800
State prisons
75,200
Federal prisons
9,200

615,500
516,200
44,700
49,200
5,400

Minor
children
1,300,800
1,067,200
105,300
117,100
11,200

Note: Only children under age 18 are counted.

Characteristics of women
serving a sentence

Drug

Public-order

1979
1986
1991
1997

Table 17

Race and Hispanic origin

0%
25%
50%
Percent of female State prison inmates
Fig. 9

women convicted of violence under
supervision by probation authorities
compared to about 3,300 convicted
violent offenders in local jails, 21,000
in State prisons, and fewer than 1,000
in Federal prison. Similarly, among
convicted female drug traffickers, an
estimated 58,000 are on probation,
5,300 are held in local jails, 13,500 in
State prisons, and about 5,300 in
Federal prison.

While nearly two-thirds of women
under probation supervision are white,
nearly two-thirds of those confined in
local jails and State and Federal
prisons are minority & black, Hispanic
and other races. Hispanics account
for about 1 in 7 women in State prisons
but nearly 1 in 3 female prisoners in
Federal custody.

Age
Women in prison, both State and
Federal, are older than their counterparts in local jails or under probation
supervision. While about 1 in 5 women

Characteristics of adult women on probation, in jail, and in prison
Characteristics
of women

Probation

Local
jails

State
prisons

Federal
prisons

Race/Hispanic origin
White
Black
Hispanic
Other

62%
27
10
1

36%
44
15
5

33%
48
15
4

29%
35
32
4

Age
24 or younger
25-34
35-44
45-54
55 or older

20%
39
30
10
1

21%
46
27
5
1

12%
43
34
9
2

9%
35
32
18
6

33 years

36 years

Median age

32 years

31 years

Marital status
Married
Widowed
Separated
Divorced
Never married

26%
2
10
20
42

15%
4
13
20
48

17%
6
10
20
47

29%
6
21
10
34

Education
8th grade or less
Some high school
High school graduate/GED
Some college or more

5%
35
39
21

12%
33
39
16

7%
37
39
17

8%
19
44
29

on probation or in local jails are under
age 25, 1 in 8 State prisoners and
1 in 11 Federal prisoners are of this
age. Nearly a quarter of Federal prison
inmates are at least 45 years old.

Marital status
Adult women under correctional care,
custody, or control are substantially
more likely than the equivalent general
population to have never been married.
Nearly half of women in both State
prisons and local jails have never been
married.

Education
The majority of women involved with
the justice system are at least high
school graduates. An estimated 60%
of those on probation, 55% of those
in local jails, 56% of those in State
prisons, and 73% of those in Federal
prison have completed high school,
and 30% - 40% of high school graduates have attended some college or
more.
Inmates’ children
Approximately 7 in 10 women under
correctional sanction have minor
children & children under the age of
18. An estimated 72% of women on
probation, 70% of women held in local
jails, 65% of women in State prisons,
and 59% of women in Federal prisons
have young children.

Table 16

Women under correctional care,
custody, or supervision with minor
children reported an average of 2.11
children of this age. Those on probation reported the fewest, 2.07 young

Women Offenders

7

In 1997 an estimated 2.8% of all children under age 18 have at least one parent
in a local jail or a State or Federal prison. About 1 in 40 children have
an incarcerated father, and 1 in 359 children have an incarcerated mother.
Total

Children with an incarcerated parent
Mothers
Fathers

Estimated number of
children under age 18
Jails
State prisons
Federal prisons
Total

620,539
1,199,277
121,980
1,941,796

84,240
102,448
7,816
194,504

536,299
1,096,829
114,164
1,747,292

Percent of all children
under age 18
Jails
State prisons
Federal prisons
Total

0.89%
1.72
0.17
2.78

0.12%
0.15
0.01
0.28

0.77%
1.57
0.16
2.50

Alcohol and drug use

Note: In 1997 69,898,000 children under age 18 were in the resident population.
Table 18

children per woman with children while
those in State prison reported an
average of 2.38 children under age 18.
These estimates translate into more
than 1.3 million minor children who are
the offspring of women under correctional sanction; more than a quarter
million of these children have mothers
who are serving time in prison or jail.
About two-thirds of women in State
prisons and half of women in Federal
prisons who had young children had
lived with those children prior to entering prison.
Male inmates in State prisons are
estimated to have been fathers to
about 1.1 million children under age 18,
about 11 times the number of minor
children attributable to female inmates.
About 64% of women inmates with
minor children had lived with those
children prior to admission to prison;
among men, 44% had resided with
their minor children before imprisonment. Males in Federal prisons had
nearly 15 times as many minor children
in total as female Federal inmates;
8 in 10 of these men and just under 6
in 10 women resided with the children
prior to entering prison.
Economic circumstances
Female prisoners generally had more
difficult economic circumstances than
male inmates prior to entering prison.
About 4 in 10 women in State prison
8 Women Offenders

reported that they had been employed
full-time prior to their arrest. By
contrast, nearly 6 in 10 male inmates
had been working full-time prior to
arrest. About 37% of women and 28%
of men had incomes of less than $600
per month prior to arrest. While just
under 8% of male inmates had been
receiving welfare assistance prior to
arrest, nearly 30% of female inmates
reported receiving welfare assistance
at the time just before the arrest which
brought them to prison.
Health issues
Local
jails
Gynecological exam
since admission?

22%

State
prisons

About half of women offenders
confined in State prisons had been
using alcohol, drugs, or both at the time
of the offense for which they had been
incarcerated. Among these women
offenders, drug use at the time of the
offense was reported more often than
alcohol use, a different pattern from
that found among male offenders in
State prisons. On every measure of
drug use (ever used, using regularly,
using in month before the offense, and
using at time of offense), women
offenders in State prisons reported
higher usage & 40% of women inmates
compared to 32% of male inmates had
been under the influence of drugs
when the crime occurred. By contrast,
every measure of alcohol use was
higher for male inmates than for female
inmates. An estimated 25% of women
on probation, 29% of women in local
jails, 29% of women in State prisons,
and 15% of women in Federal prisons
had been consuming alcohol at the
time of the offense.

90%

Pregnant when admitted?

6%

5%

Prenatal care since admission?

3%

4%

17%

23%

Receiving medication
for emotional disorder?

HIV-positive, about 3.5% of the female
inmate population. An estimated
20,200 male inmates, about 2.2% of
the male population, was HIV-positive.
The percentage of the female inmate
population that was HIV-positive
peaked in 1993 at 4.2%.

Table 19

In 1997 an estimated 2,200 women
serving time in State prisons were

Just over half of women confined in
State prisons reported drinking alcohol
in the year before the current offense
compared to two-thirds of male offenders in State prisons. Daily drinkers
accounted for about 25% of female
inmates and 29% of male inmates.

History of physical or sexual abuse
Women

Ever physically or
sexually abused
Before age 18

Probation

Local jails

41%
16

48%
21

State prisons
57%
12

After age 18

13

11

20

Both periods

13

16

25

15%

Ever abused
Physically
Sexually
Both

10%

18%

7

10

11

18

27

28

Forty-four percent of
women under correctional
authority reported that
they were physically or
sexually assaulted at
some time during their
lives. Sixty-nine percent
of women reporting an
assault said that it had
occurred before age 18.
Table 20

treatment; 20% of
women and 14% of
men had received
Percent of female State prison inmates
using at the time of the offense &
such treatment since
Both alcohol
prison admission.
Total None
and drugs
Alcohol Drugs
Nearly a third of
All
100%
48%
16%
13%
24%
both men and
women inmates with
Violent
100
51
17
20
11
Property
100
53
15
7
25
substance abuse
Drug
100
43
18
7
32
problems indicated
Public-order 100
41
10
24
25
that they had particiTable 21
pated in some other
At the time of the offense, 29%
type of voluntary program, such as
of women offenders and 38% of male
Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics
inmates had been under the influence
Anonymous, since entering prison.
of alcohol.
Criminal history
About 6 in 10 women in State prison
described themselves as using drugs
About 65% of women confined in State
in the month before the offense, 5 in 10 prisons had a history of prior convicdescribed themselves as a daily user
tions; about 77% of men serving time
of drugs, and 4 in 10 were under the
in State prisons had a prior conviction
influence of drugs at the time of the
record. Male inmates were twice as
offense. Nearly 1 in 3 women serving
likely as female inmates to have had a
time in State prisons said they had
juvenile history (38% versus 19%);
committed the offense which brought
7 out of 10 male inmates and 6 out of
them to prison in order to obtain money 10 female inmates had an adult history
to support their need for drugs.
of convictions. About 1 in 6 women
inmates and nearly 1 in 3 male inmates
Substance abusing women inmates
had criminal records spanning both
were more likely than drug/alcoholtheir juvenile and adult years.
involved male inmates to report having
received treatment. Nearly 56% of
Male inmates had also acquired more
women substance abusers in State
convictions than women. While about
prisons compared to 41% of males had a third of women prisoners had 3 or
ever been in substance abuse
more prior convictions, about 43% of
male inmates had records containing at
least 3 prior convictions.
Criminal history of prison inmates
Alcohol and drug use by female inmates

Criminal history
Past convictions
None
Juvenile only
Adult only
Both adult and juvenile

Percent of
State prison
inmates
Female Male
35% 23%
3
7
46
39
16
31

Number of prior convictions
0
1
2
3-5
6-10
11 or more

35%
17
16
19
8
5

Status at arrest
None
Probation
Parole
Escapee

47% 53%
34
21
18
25
1
1

23%
17
16
25
12
6

Women in prison were substantially
more likely than male inmates to have
had a correctional status at the time
of the offense which brought them to
prison. About 1 in 3 women inmates
had been on probation when their
offense occurred compared to 1 in 5
male inmates.

About 40% of female first-timers and
65% of male first-timers serving a
prison sentence had been convicted of
a violent offense. This translates into
about 20% of all women inmates and
8% of all male inmates incarcerated in
State prisons nationwide as offenders
serving their first sentence after conviction for a nonviolent crime.
State and Federal prisoners
At the end of 1998, 84,427 women
were under the jurisdiction of State and
Federal correctional authorities. Of
these, 75,241 were held by the States
and 9,186 were held by the Federal
Bureau of Prisons. Between 1990 and
1998 the number of women confined in
Female prison populations, 1998
Number of female
inmates
Per
100,000
Yearend
women
Jurisdictions
1998
residents
Total, all jurisdictions 84,427
57
States, total
Federal

75,241
9,186

51
5

States with at least 1,000
women prisoners
Alabama
1,525
Arizona
1,780
California
11,694
Colorado
1,070
Connecticut
1,357
Florida
3,526
Georgia
2,474
Illinois
2,646
Indiana
1,198
Kentucky
1,046
Louisiana
2,126
Maryland
1,140
Michigan
2,052
Mississippi
1,213
Missouri
1,880
New Jersey
1,653
New York
3,631
North Carolina
1,932
Ohio
2,912
Oklahoma
2,091
Pennsylvania
1,517
South Carolina
1,412
Texas
10,343
Virginia
1,806
Washington
1,018
Wisconsin
1,169

64
66
67
53
43
45
61
43
39
51
94
39
41
77
67
39
38
35
50
122
24
63
102
47
35
42
Table 23

Table 22

Women Offenders

9

prisons grew by an annual average of
8.5%; over the same years, prison
populations nationwide increased an
average 6.7% annually. In 1990 State
and Federal prisons housed 44,065
female prisoners, just over half the
number held in 1998.

Trends in the number of sentenced Women accounted for more than 10%
female prisoners per 100,000 female of those admitted to State prisons for
negligent manslaughter (13% were
residents, by race:
women), larceny (18%), arson (12%),
Year All women
White
Black
fraud (31%), drug possession (14%),
1990
31
19
117
1991
33
19
129
and drug trafficking (11%). Women
1992
35
20
136
accounted for about 1% of those admit1993
40
23
155
ted for rape and sexual assault.
1994
45
26
169

Among State prisoners in 1998, 44%
(33,345) were held by States in the
South. The incarceration rate in the
South was the highest of any region &
65 female prisoners per 100,000
residents. The West accounted for
25% (18,845) of the total State prison
population and had a per capita rate of
imprisonment of 58 per 100,000.
Midwestern States, with about 18% of
female State prisoners (13,684), had
a rate of 42 prisoners per 100,000
residents. The Northeast accounted for
12% of women held by States (9,367)
and had an incarceration rate of 31.

1995
1996
1997
1998

In 1998 the highest per capita rate of
confinement among the States was in
Oklahoma (122), and the lowest was in
Maine and Vermont (9 in each). The
District of Columbia had a rate equal to
173 per 100,000 female residents.

47
51
53
57

Sentences to prison

Prison admissions

Prison releases

In 1996 women accounted for about
9% of all State prison admissions, 10%
of those admitted from courts, and 8%
of revoked violator admissions.

Women accounted for just over 9% of
those discharged from State prisons in
1996.

*Based on projected estimate.
Table 24

For all types of offenses except
property offenses, the sentences
received by women were shorter than
those received by men; the average
sentences for property offenses were
the same. Short sentences on average
may reflect overall differences in criminal background, particularly the prevalence of violence in the backgrounds of
males sentenced to prison.

Men
Percent of Median
admissions sentence
100%
48 mo
31
72
28
36
29
42
12
36
Table 25

10 Women Offenders

176
185
192
212*

About 26% of women admitted to
prison following a court sentence had
been convicted of larceny or fraud
(including forgery and embezzlement)
& offenses accounting for about 10%
of male admissions.

New court commitments to State prison in 1996
Women
Percent of Median
admissions sentence
Total
100%
36 mo
Violent
17
60
Property
36
36
Drugs
39
36
All other
8
24

27
30
32
34*

Among those released, the median
time served for murder was 80 months
for men and 60 months for women.
As found for sentencing, the median
length of stay for women was less than
that for men for every type of offense.
This may be a reflection of the more
extensive criminal histories of men and
the higher prevalence of convictions for
violence in their backgrounds.

First releases from State prison in 1996

Total
Violent
Property
Drugs
All other

Women
Percent of Median
releases
time served
100%
12 mo
14
20
38
11
41
12
8
10

Men
Percent of Median time
releases served
100%
16 mo
26
28
31
15
32
14
11
12
Table 26

Death sentences
At the end of 1997, 44 inmates, or
1.3% of the death row population, were
women. During the year, two women
were sentenced to death and five had
their death sentences removed. States
holding women under sentence of
death were &
Alabama - 3
Arizona - 1
California - 8
Florida - 6
Idaho - 1
Illinois - 2
Mississippi - 1

Missouri - 1
Nevada - 1
New Jersey - 1
North Carolina - 3
Oklahoma - 3
Pennsylvania - 4
Tennessee - 2
Texas - 7

Number of women under sentence of death
50

40

Total
30

20

White women
10

Black women
0
1971

1975

1980
1985
December 31

1990

1995 1997

Table 27

Of the 44 women under sentence
of death, 30 were white and 14 were
black. One white inmate and one black
inmate were Hispanic.
For women under sentence of death,
an average of 78 months had elapsed
since sentencing, about 8 months less
than for males.
Between January 1, 1977, and December 31, 1997, a total of 432 persons
were executed including 1 white,
non-Hispanic female in North Carolina
in 1984. During 1998, 2 women were
executed (1 each in Texas and
Florida).
Recidivism
In 1996, women accounted for about
11% of successful discharges from
parole and 8% of unsuccessful parole
terminations. Overall, about 45% of
women for whom parole supervision
was ended in 1996 were returned to
prison or had absconded. Women
successfully discharged from parole

supervision had spent an average of
15 months in prison on their sentence
and 20 months under supervision in
the community. Unsuccessful female
parole discharges had spent an
average of 17 months in prison and 18
months under community supervision
prior to termination.
A 3-year followup of a sample representing 109,000 persons (6,400
females among them) discharged from
prisons in 11 States in 1983 found that
52% of women were rearrested. An
estimated 39% of women discharged
from prisons were reconvicted within 3
years and 33% were returned to
prison. Prior arrest history was an
important predictor of post-prison
recidivism: among women with only the
one arrest for which they had been
imprisoned, 21% were rearrested
within 3 years. Among women with 2-3
prior arrests, 33% were rearrested;
those with 4-6 prior arrests had a 47%
rearrest rate; among those with 7-10
priors, 69% were rearrested; and,
nearly 8 out of 10 women with 11 or
more priors were rearrested.

Fig. 10

The prevalence of imprisonment
among women
The most recent BJS estimate of the
lifetime chance of being sent to
Federal or State prison at least once
indicates that overall about 11
women out of 1,000 will be incarcerated at some time in their lives. The
estimates further show that about 5
out of 1,000 white women, 36 out of
1,000 black women, and 15 out of
1,000 Hispanic women will be
subjected to imprisonment during
their lifetime.
For males, BJS estimates indicate
that about 90 out of 1,000 males will
be incarcerated during their lives; 44
white males, 285 black males, and
160 Hispanic males for every 1,000
in the general population will serve
time in a Federal or State prison.
By
age &
20
25
30
35
40
45
50
55
65
Lifetime

White
-2
3
4
4
5
5
5
5
5

1,000 women
Black Hispanic
3
1
11
4
20
7
27
9
31
12
33
13
34
14
35
15
36
15
36
15
Table 28

Women Offenders

11

Basic sources for statistics
describing women offenders
The information in this report was
derived from the following data
sources. Detailed descriptions of the
methodology can be found in recent
publications and can be obtained by
requesting them from the BJS Clearinghouse, Box 179, Annapolis
Junction, MD 20701-0179, or by
calling 1-800-732-3277.
Most reports are also available at the
BJS World Wide Web site 
http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov/bjs/
National Crime Victimization Survey
The National Crime Victimization
Survey (NCVS) is one of two statistical
series maintained by the Department of
Justice to learn about the extent to
which crime is occurring. The NCVS,
which gathers data on criminal victimization from a national sample of
household respondents, provides
annual estimates of crimes experienced by the public without regard to
whether a law enforcement agency
was called about the crime. Initiated in
1972, the NCVS was designed to
complement what is known about
crimes reported to local law enforcement agencies under the FBI's annual
compilation known as the Uniform
Crime Reports (UCR).
The NCVS gathers information about
crime and its consequences from a
nationally representative sample of
U.S. residents age 12 or older about
any crimes they may have
experienced. For personal contact
crimes the survey asks about the
perpetrator, including gender.
One of the important contributions of
the NCVS is that it permits multiple
years of responses to the same
questions to be analyzed, facilitating
research on small subgroups of the
population. For this study 5 years of
NCVS data (1993-97) were combined,
resulting in more than 1 million interviews, just over 40,000 of which were
conducted among persons experiencing violent victimizations.
12 Women Offenders

Criminal Victimization 1998: Changes
1997-98 with Trends 1993-98, BJS,
July 1999, NCJ 176353.

for 425,012 of the estimated 464,590
murders. Supplemental data were also
reported for 469,220 of the estimated
513,051 offenders.

Uniform Crime Reporting program
The UCR program of the FBI provides
another opportunity to examine the
issue of crime and violence committed
by women offenders through the
incident-based Supplementary
Homicide Report program and the
summary compilation of national arrest
data. The summary-based arrest
component of the UCR provides data
by gender of arrestees for both Part I
crimes and the less serious Part II
crimes.
In 1997, data by gender and offense
were available for about 2 out of 3
arrests nationwide (about 10.5 million
of the estimated 15.3 million arrests
that year). Females are estimated to
account for about 16% of those
arrested for Part I violent crimes.
The 1997 UCR does indicate reduced
reporting of arrests by gender (table
42) and that a number of jurisdictions
(Kentucky, Illinois, Montana, District
of Columbia, Florida, and New
Hampshire) supplied either limited or
no arrest data. Some of these incomplete or missing States, notably Illinois
and Florida, may affect the national
estimates for females.
FBI, Crime in the United States,
selected years.
Supplementary Homicide Reports
FBI's Supplementary Homicide
Reports (SHR) is a part of the UCR
program. Supplemental data about
homicide incidents are submitted
monthly with detail on location, victim,
and offender characteristics. These
reports include information on the
month and year of an offense, on the
reporting agency and its residential
population, on the age, race, and sex
of victims and offenders, and on the
victim/offender relationship, weapon
use, and circumstance of the crime.
For the years 1976-97, contributing
agencies provided supplemental data

FBI, National Archive of Criminal
Justice Data, accessible through 
http://www.icpsr.umich.edu/NACJD/
home.html search for data (DA): 6754
State Court Processing Statistics
State Court Processing Statistics
(SCPS) (formerly, through 1994,
National Pretrial Reporting Program
(NPRP)) provides data on the criminal
justice processing of persons charged
with felonies in 40 jurisdictions representative of the 75 largest counties,
which account for about half the
serious crime nationwide. The program
prospectively tracks felony defendants
from charging by the prosecutor until
disposition of their cases or for a
maximum of 12 months. Data are
obtained on demographic characteristics, arrest offense, criminal justice
status at time of arrest, prior arrests
and convictions, bail and pretrial
release, court appearance record,
rearrests while on pretrial release, type
and outcome of adjudication, and type
and length of sentence. This biennial
data collection originated in 1988.

Felony Defendants in Large Urban
Counties, 1996, BJS, October 1999,
NCJ 176981.
National Judicial Reporting Program
The National Judicial Reporting
Program (NJRP) is a sample survey
of court records on convicted felons.
Using a nationally representative
sample of counties, NJRP compiles
individual-level data on felons
convicted in State courts. Data
elements include conviction offense,
sentence received, case-processing,
methods of conviction, and a variety
of other defendant characteristics. The
NJRP first reported felony sentencing
data for 1986 and has provided
national estimates at 2-year intervals.

Felony Sentences in State Courts,
1996, BJS, May 1999, NCJ 173939.

National Prisoner Statistics

and those confined in local jails and
State and Federal prisons. These
The National Prisoner Statistics (NPS) nationally representative surveys are
data series produces annual and semi- the principal source of information on
annual national and State-level data on those serving time following a conviction: their backgrounds, their prior
the numbers of prisoners in State and
Federal prison facilities (NPS-1). Since criminal histories, and the circum1926 the Federal government has
stances surrounding the offense for
published data annually on the prisoner which they had been incarcerated.
count in each State, the District of
Both jail and prison surveys obtain
from violent offenders details about the
Columbia, and the Federal prison
offender's relationship to the victim.
system.

Prisoners in 1998, BJS, August 1999,
NCJ 175687.

Substance Abuse and Treatment of
Adults on Probation, 1995, BJS, March
1998, NCJ 166611.
Profile of Jail Inmates, 1996, BJS, April
A second data collection in the NPS
series yields annual national and State- 1998, NCJ 164629.
Substance Abuse and Treatment of
level data on persons sentenced to
State and Federal Prisoners, 1997,
death and those executed (NPS-8).
Data collected include offender
BJS, January 1999, NCJ 172871.
demographic characteristics, prior
Lifetime Likelihood of Going to
criminal histories, and criminal justice
system status at the time of the capital State or Federal Prison
offense, and time spent on death row.
Data are available on executions since This BJS Special Report estimates
lifetime chances of going to State or
1930 and sentencing since 1973.
Federal prison using standard
Capital Punishment 1997, BJS,
demographic lifetable techniques and
December 1998, NCJ 172881.
assuming that recent incarceration
rates remain unchanged. It describes
National Corrections Reporting
characteristics of persons admitted to
Program
prison for the first time, compares
lifetime and 1-day prevalence rates,
The National Corrections Reporting
and considers changes in admission
Program (NCRP) has collected data
rates since 1991. March 1997, NCJ
annually since 1983 on prison admis160092.
sions and releases and on parole
Data points for the graphical figures
entries and discharges in participating
jurisdictions. Demographic information, conviction offenses, sentence
Figure 1, page 2
length, minimum time to be served,
credited jail time, type of admission,
Race of female offender
type of release, and time served are
Offense
White
Black
Other
collected from individual prisoner
Violent offenses 55%
35%
11%
Robbery
43
43
14
records.
BJS spreadsheets for selected years
accessible through 

Assault
Aggravated
Simple

45
58

46
31

10
10

Figure 3, page 2
Age of
Percent of violent
offenders female offenders
Under 12
12-14
15-17
18-20
21-29
30 or older

2%
14
12
10
25
38

Figure 4, page 3
Victim-offender
relationship
Intimate
Relative
Acquaintance
Stranger

Female
offenders
6%
7
49
38

Male
offenders
7%
3
27
64

Figure 5, page 3
Victim-offender
relationship
Intimate
Relative
Acquaintance
Stranger

Female offenders
Female Male
victims
victims
1%
29%
7
7
55
26
37
39

Figure 6, page 3

Location of violence
At/near victim's home
School
Open area
Work
Commercial area
Other

Female
Male
offenders offenders
26%
21%
20
10
18
26
12
15
12
13
12
15

Figure 7, page 3
Victim’s perception
of offender’s use of
alcohol or drugs at the Female
Male
time of the violence
offenders offenders
Neither
61%
60%
Any
39
40
Both
8
10
Alcohol only
19
25
Drugs only
11
6

http://ojp.usdoj.gov/bjs/
dtdata.htm#time
Surveys of probationers and jail
and prison inmates
BJS also conducts national surveys of
persons under probation supervision

Women Offenders

13

Figure 8, page 4

1976

1980

1985

1990

1995
1998

Figure 10, page 11

Murderers per 100,000 residents
Male
Female
Female
rate
rate
rate x 5
16.3
3.1
15.5
16.2
3.0
15.0
16.8
2.8
14.0
18.6
2.9
14.5
20.6
3.1
15.5
18.9
2.9
14.5
17.4
2.8
14.0
15.8
2.6
13.0
15.2
2.3
11.5
15.2
2.2
11.0
16.5
2.3
11.5
16.0
2.2
11.0
16.8
2.2
11.0
17.4
2.1
10.5
19.6
2.2
11.0
20.7
2.2
11.0
19.3
1.9
9.5
19.9
2.0
10.0
18.8
1.9
9.5
17.2
1.6
8.0
15.5
1.7
8.5
14.2
1.5
7.5
11.5
1.3
6.5

1971

1975

1980

1985

1990

1995
The number of female murderers per
100,000 females in the population was
multiplied by 5 so that year-to-year differences could be seen.

1997

Women under sentence of death
White
Black
Total
3
0
3
4
0
4
1
1
2
0
1
2
4
3
8
4
1
5
4
2
6
5
0
5
6
2
8
7
2
9
8
3
11
11
3
14
9
4
13
12
5
18
12
6
19
12
7
20
16
7
23
16
9
25
20
11
31
23
12
35
24
12
36
24
13
37
26
12
38
28
15
43
31
15
46
32
15
47
30
14
44

The Bureau of Justice Statistics
is the statistical agency of the
U.S. Department of Justice.
Jan M. Chaiken, Ph.D., is director.
BJS Special Reports address a
specific topic from one or more
datasets that cover many topics.
Lawrence A. Greenfeld and Tracy
L. Snell wrote this report. James
A. Fox, Ph.D., the Lipman Family
Professor of Criminal Justice at
Northeastern University, contributed
data on homicides. Devon Adams,
Maureen A. Henneberg, and Steven
Smith of BJS provided review assistance and comments. Tom Hester
produced the report, and Jayne
Robinson prepared it for final publication. Priscilla Middleton and
Marianne Zawitz managed the
dissemination of the report and the
production of the Internet version.
December 1999, NCJ 175688

Figure 9, page 7

Violent
Property
Drug
Public-order

Percent of female State prison inmates
1979
1986
1991
1997
47.9%
40.7%
32.2%
28.2%
36.1
41.2
28.7
26.6
12.3
12.0
32.8
34.4
2.8
5.1
5.7
10.5

This report and others from the
Bureau of Justice Statistics are available through the Internet &
http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov/bjs
The data from the statistical series
analyzed in this report are available
from the National Archive of Criminal
Justice Data, maintained by the Interuniversity Consortium for Political and
Social Research at the University of
Michigan, 1-800-999-0960. The
archive may also be accessed
through BJS Internet site.

14 Women Offenders

 

 

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