Violence in Jails

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21 May 2006
Prison and Jail Violence in America

Most of the major cities within the United States are inundated with local violence. Although violence can be carried out and seen in many different ways, the type of violence that will be discussed herein is prison and jail violence and the causes of it. Prison culture is recorded on the basis of observation, experience, or scientific reasoning. Violence is used by prison guards to control inmates, and by inmates to establish power and dominance over other inmates and guards. When a criminal is adjudicated he or she will either be sentenced to prison or jail, Jails are locally-operated correctional facilities that confine persons before or after adjudication. Inmates sentenced to jail usually have a sentence of a year or less, but jails also incarcerate persons in a wide variety of other categories” (Bureau of Justice Statistics).

Prison on the other hand is a place that holds much more violent prisoners for a longer period of time. Experts say that prison violence may be linked to reasons such as gang violence within the prison, corrupt prison guards, prisoner profiling, or over crowding prisons. It may be possible that the rise in prison violence will cause people to take a closer look at why violence in prisons and jails still occur even after the inmates have been sentenced for breaking the law. Prison violence has been on the rise in the United States of America since the early 1980’s. According to the U.S. Department of Justice, “Over half of the increase in State prison population since 1995 is due to an increase in the prisoners convicted of violent offenses” (Bureau of Justice Statistics). Federal statistics show that more than 2.2 million men and women are currently incarcerated, four times the...
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