To save money and comply with a court order, thousands of drug criminals. thieves, burglars and drunk drivers that would have once been sent to state prison are instead serving their sentences in county jails.
This "realignment" reduced the state prison population by 14,000, or 8 percent, during 2011. The trend will continue as the state prison population is expected to fall by another 20 percent by mid-2013.
This chart shows, by primary charge of offenders, the reduction in the state prison population during 2011.
Notes: Charges shown represent 90 percent of prison population reductions in 2011. Some reductions may not be related to realignment. Excludes second-degree murder; many second-degree murder cases were reclassified as assault cases in 2011 due to a technical change. The word "drug" in the above chart is shorthand for controlled substance.