44,700 People Serving Sentences in State Prisons in the US Whose Most Serious Offense was Possession

The US Dept. of Justice's Bureau of Justice Statistics reports that at yearend 2015, 1,298,159 people were serving sentences in state prisons in the US, of whom 197,200 (15.2% of the total) had as their most serious offence a drug charge: 44,700 for drug possession (3.4% of the total), and 152,500 for "other" drug offenses, including manufacturing and sale (11.7% of the total).


E. Ann Carson, PhD. Prisoners In 2016. Washington, DC: US Dept of Justice Bureau of Justice Statistics, January 2018, NCJ251149, Table 12, p. 18, and Table 13, p. 19.