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Drug possession has become one of the largest crimes in the United States and is a small portion of the parent category: drug offenses. We’ve compiled and organized statistics from the Bureau of Justice Statistics and the FBI for your convenience in relation to drug possession charges.
Note: All of these statistics do not include those arrested during a traffic violation.
- 46% increase of drug possession or use arrests between 1990 and 2010.
- 1,276,099 arrests for drug possession from a total of 1,552,432 arrests made relating to drugs (2012)
- 42.4% of possession arrests were for marijuana (2012)
- 16.5% of possession arrests were for heroin, cocaine, and their derivatives (2012)
- 4.5% of possession arrests were for synthetic of manufactured drugs (2012)
- The average time served was 16 months or 1.3 years (2004)
- The average time served is 20 months or 1.7 years (2012) if tried by the State government
- The average time served is 81 months or 6.75 years (2012) if tried by the Federal government
Juveniles (under the age of 18):
- There were 148,700 arrests on drug abuse violations (2011)
- Of these arrests, 123,421 arrests (83%) were male
- 11% of drug possession arrests involved a juvenile (2010)
- 855 juveniles were arrested on drug abuse charges in Maryland (2011)
The following is a table summarizing drug possession and abuse arrests for adults and juveniles in the United States:
|Adult/Juvenile||Total Arrests w/ Year||Time Served||% Male||% Female|
|Adult||1,276,099 arrests in 2012||1.7 years in 2012 (State)
6.75 years in 2012 (Federal)
|Juvenile||148,700||103 days in a juvenile residential placement facility||83%||17%|
For more information and statistics, visit these government resources: