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Strange Prison Facts
Strange Prison Facts

The average “minimum security” inmate in federal prison costs U.S. taxpayers $21,000 a year while the average “maximum security” inmate in federal prison costs U.S. taxpayers $33,000 a year.

Illegal immigrants make up approximately 30 percent of the total population in our federal, state and local prisons.

The state of Ohio has more people in prison than the entire country of Pakistan despite having less than 1/16th of the population.

The sagging jeans below your waist in hip-hop culture began in jail when prisoners were detained without a belt for fear they might use it to commit suicide, or kill a fellow inmate.

A town in Brazil powers streetlights by having inmates pedal bicycles in exchange for a shorter sentence.

The longest prison term ever sentenced was 2,200 years. He appealed, was re-convicted, re-sentenced, and given an additional 9,000 years.

Louisiana State Penitentiary, also known as "Alcatraz of the South" or "The Farm", was founded as a slave plantation, and is still run as a prison farm to this day.

A man who spent 6 months in jail after being falsely accused of murder was set free when his attorney established his alibi by finding him in outtake footage from "Curb Your Enthusiasm" which was shooting at a Dodgers game.

Beloved artist Salvador Dali made a painting for the prisoners at Rikers Island in NYC that hung in the prisoner dining room for 15 years. It was later moved to the prison lobby for 'safekeeping'. In 2003, three prison guards and a warden stole the painting.

Nicholas Webber, a hacker who, while serving five years for hacking, signed up for a prison IT class and successfully hacked into the prison's mainframe.

Steven Russell escaped from prison by using laxatives to fake the symptoms of AIDS. He then called the prison, posing as a doctor, asking for prisoners interested in an experimental treatment, and volunteered. Once out of Texas, he sent death certificates to the prison stating he had died.

In 2009 four prison inmates rescued a correctional officer from another inmate. The heroes were in prison for assault, armed robbery, home invasion, murder, and sex offenses and saved the deputy because he treated them "like human beings".

The average annual cost to incarcerate one inmate in federal prison is about $29,000. Incarceration costs taxpayers almost $70 billion annually.

About half of the inmates in federal prisons are serving time for non-violent drug offenses.

The U.S. prison population has more than quadrupled since the early 1980s: when mandatory minimum sentencing laws for drugs when into effect.

At 5,000 jails and prison in the U.S., there are more jails than Universities and colleges.

The U.S. has the highest prison population in the entire world and has the highest prison rate in the world at about 724 people per 100,000.

A California prison inmate managed to get two boxes of staples, a pencil sharpener, sharpener blades and three jumbo binder rings in his rectum, earning him the nickname “O.D.” or “Office Depot.”

On March 10, 2011, Guinness World Records certified Japanese former boxer Iwao Hakamada as the world’s longest-held death row inmate for a 1966 mass murder that became known as the Hakamada Incident. He’s was in solitary confinement for 46 years. A 2008 DNA test suggested the blood on the clothing used as evidence did not match Hakamada’s. On March 27, 2014, Hakamada was released from prison.

Bayer, famous for producing aspirin, bought prisoners to use as research subjects for testing new drugs.