Missouri Leads Nation in Cutting Inmate Population

FARMINGTON, MO - Missour leads the nation in inmate population reduction.

The number of people locked up in Missouri dropped nearly three percent in one year.  The St. Louis Post-Dispatch says that's the largest percentage decrease in any state.

State officials cite recent programs aimed at getting offenders back into society.

Missouri has new supervision centers to house offenders who may have slipped up with probation or parole violations.  It has a re-entry program to help inmates re-enter theire communities.

The state even has tools like a computer application that helps judges determine sentences.

Some prosecutors don't like the computer program, saying it could lead to cookie-cutter sentencing despite different case circumstances.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)