As violent crime becomes an integral part of life in the United States, the penal system continues to develop, as it has in the past quarter century, in order to accommodate it.
If in 1971 the prison population was less than 200,000, by the end of 2010 it exceeded 2.2 million. According to government statistics,more than 1 in 100 adults (7.3 million) are currently behind bars, costing the U.S. economy – in incarceration and relative costs – roughly $44 billion per year.
Rising crime is not, however, the only reason for such a tremendous increase of the prison incarceration rate. The criminal justice system has grown tougher and tougher on offenders, tripling the average prison time, and also increasing the likelihood of incarceration once convicted. Check out this infographic, put together by the law offices of Andrew M. Weisberg, to learn how to survive the ever-toughening criminal justice system in America: