State prison homicides highest in nation

Ponca City Now - February 17, 2015 7:48 am

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) – The latest figures from the Bureau of Justice Statistics show Oklahoma has the highest rate of prison homicides in the nation, with state inmates killed at a rate more than three times the national average.

The figures reviewed by The Associated Press as part of a months-long investigation show 39 homicides at Oklahoma prisons between 2001 and 2012, a rate of 14 per 100,000 inmates. The second highest rate is Maryland with 11 homicides per 100,000. The national average is 4 per 100,000.

Oklahoma prison officials provided details on 38 killings inside Oklahoma prisons from 2005 to 2014, and a review of those cases show 10 of the inmate victims had convictions for sex crimes.

Oklahoma Department of Corrections spokeswoman Terri Watkins acknowledges the number of killings is too high.

 

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