How many people die each year in US jails and prisons?

The Los Angeles County jails had a particularly deadly year in 2023, with 45 people dying in custody. There were at least nine drug-related deaths, three suicides, three homicides, one death following signs of hypothermia and several cases where the cause has not yet been determined. By year-end, the county’s jails proved deadlier than they were just before the pandemic, when the incarcerated population was much higher.

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