Based on information from the 2005 Census of Jails, a sample of individual jail reporting units was selected for the 2008 survey. The sample included public and private jails in 875 selected jail jurisdictions. A stratified random sample of county or city jurisdictions was stratified by average daily population (ADP) as reported by the 2005 Census of Jails. Large jails and regional jails were included in the sample with certainty.
All sampled jail jurisdictions (i.e., counties, municipalities, boroughs, etc.) identified through from the 2005 Census of Jail Inmates.
The response rate for the survey was 100 percent for the following critical data items: confined persons (CONFPOP), number of adult male and adult female inmates (ADMALE, ADFEML), average daily population (ADP), and total rated capacity of jails (RATCAP). Extensive follow-up, including additional
mail and fax requests and repeated telephone contacts, resulted in a nearly
100 percent response rate for the number of juvenile male and juvenile female
inmates (JUVMALE, JUVFEML), and for the number of male and female inmates
by conviction status (CONVMALE, CONVFML, UNCONVML, UNCONVFM), and around
95 percent for the number of inmates by race and Hispanic origin (WHITE, BLACK,
HISP, AMINDALK, ASIAN, HAWPAC, TWORACE). The response rate for data on
admissions to and releases from jail was nearly 90 percent.