The Maricopa County Estrella Jail in Phoenix, Arizona [File: Ross Franklin/AP Photo]

More than 65 percent of the 740,000 people detained in local jails in the United States have not been convicted of the charge on which they are being held in any given year, according to government figures.

At Santa Rita Jail (SRJ) in Alameda County, California, one of the largest jails in the US, the percentage of inmates held in pretrial detention sits at roughly 75 percent of the daily average of 2,500 inmates that are pre-trial detention.


These individuals are detained without being proven guilty of current charges.

Pretrial detention has been highlighted over the last two months as novel coronavirus makes its way to prisons and jails across

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