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Palm Beach County Jail
By June of last year, the Palm Beach County Jail, shown in this June 4, 2021, photo, had gone from about 1,750 people before the pandemic to 1,500, according to the data compiled by the Vera Institute.

Jails emptied in pandemic. Should they stay that way?

According to a new report, the number of people incarcerated in county jails across the country declined by roughly one-quarter as counties aggressively worked to release people held on low-level charges. But in most places, the decrease didn’t last long.

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