Bulletin Reports

Incarcerated Veterans

The Bureau of Justice Statistics released Veterans in Prison and Jail, 2011-2012 in December 2015. This report provides rates of veterans in state and federal prisons and local jails during this period. It describes incarcerated veterans by demographics, military characteristics, and disability and mental health status. The details include current offense, sentencing, and criminal history by veteran status. It also examines combat experience associated with lifetime mental health disorders among incarcerated veterans. Findings are based on data from the National Inmate Survey conducted between February 2011 and May 2012. Data from previous surveys of inmates in prison and jail are used to establish historical trends regarding incarcerated veterans.

The number of veterans incarcerated in state and federal prisons and local jails decreased from 203,000 in 2004 to 181,500 in 2011 and 2012. The total incarceration rate from 2011 to 2012 was 855 per 100,000 veterans in the United States, lower than the rate for nonveterans at 968 per 100,000 residents. African American and Hispanic inmates comprised a smaller proportion of incarcerated veterans (38 percent in prison and 44 percent in jail), compared with incarcerated African American and Hispanic nonveterans (63 percent in prison and 59 percent in jail). A larger percentage of veterans (64 percent) than nonveterans (48 percent) were sentenced for violent offenses. Approximately 43 percent of veterans and 55 percent of nonveterans in prison had four or more prior arrests.

Additional information on Veterans in Prison and Jail, 2011-2012 can be found at http://www.bjs.gov/index.cfm?ty=pbdetail&iid=5479&utm_source=justinfo&utm_medium=email& utm_content=%20VPJ1112Report&utm_campaign=justinfo& ed2f26df2d9c416fbddddd2330a778c6=rllgnlnwan-rrgngmgn, December 7, 2015, NCJ 249144.