chapter  5
34 Pages

Jails: Pretrial Detention and Short-term Confinement

Before society had police, courts, or prisons, there were local jails. Because jails are the oldest component of the criminal justice system, however, they have also been the most neglected. Tracing their origins back to the abysmal conditions and corrupt fee system of the English gaols, American jails have endured a legacy of insufficient funding, inappropriate facilities, idle inmates, inadequate staffing, and a public largely indifferent to it all.