|Iowa prison population highest in 8 years|
DES MOINES — More Iowa offenders being returned to prison for work release or parole violations pushed the inmate population at state penal institutions to the highest count in eight years during fiscal 2019, new Iowa Department of Corrections data shows.
The total number of inmates housed in Iowa’s nine prisons in Anamosa, Clarinda, Fort Dodge, Mitchellville, Oakdale, Fort Madison, Mount Pleasant, Newton and Rockwell City stood at 8,473 when the fiscal year ended June 30, up 54 from the previous year and the most since the count stood at 8,778 in fiscal 2011. The overwhelming majority of inmates are men — only about 9 percent are women.
New commitments for offenders convicted of crimes that sent them to prison grew by 1 percent, while the Iowa Board of Parole tried to ease crowding by granting 2,595 paroles and 1.693 work releases to community-based corrections facilities. Another 947 left the prison system when their sentences expired.
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