by Felix Richter, Statista.com
No country in the world puts more people in jail than the United States. Currently, more than 2.2 million people in the U.S. sit behind bars. Astonishingly, that means the United States has more prisoners than high school teachers, engineers, physicians or lawyers.
Looking at the countries with the most prisoners worldwide, the United States is on top by a long stretch with 2.2 million. China comes second with 1.6 million while Russia is in third place with 701,000. When it comes to the countries to the most prisoners per 100,000 inhabitants, the United States is the world leader once again. There are 716 inmates in U.S. prisons per 100,000 of the population. By contrast, Russia has just 490 prisoners per 100,000 people.
Inside those U.S. prisons, the vast majority of inmates are serving relatively short sentences – between one and ten years. Just over 20,000 people are behind bars for more than 20 years while almost 6,200 are serving life sentences. 56 prisoners are on death row.
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