Sacramento, CA — A new trend is hitting the U.S. prison population. The Associated Press reports for the third straight year in a row the population has dipped. The Bureau of Justice Statistics says there were more than 1.5 million prison inmates last year. That is a drop of 1.7 percent from 2011. Federal prisions hit an all time high in population in 2009 with more than 1.6 million inmates.
California is responsible for most of the decrease. It has seen a decrease due to the controversial AB109 law which was passed in 2011. The law sends non-serious, non-violent or non-sex offenders to county jails. Nine states saw their prison populations drop by more than 1,000. Those include California, Texas, North Carolina, Colorado, Arkansas, New York, Florida, Virginia and Maryland.