Ohio prison population again drops below 50,000 inmates

COLUMBUS (AP) — Ohio’s adult prison population has fallen below 50,000 for the first time in four years, giving hope to officials trying to reduce the number of inmates behind bars.

The official tally taken each Tuesday was 49,596 inmates this week, 45,553 of whom are men.

That’s a drop of 179 from the same time last month and 996 fewer that the same time a year ago.

Like other states, Ohio is eager to reduce the number of inmates to save money and prevent crime by keeping low-level offenders close to home, where they can receive support family and social services.

Money saved through the reduction is better spent on programs helping needy Ohioans at an early age, said Gary Mohr, director of the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction.

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