50 State Reports

Supervision Violation Data Snapshot

States across the country saw changes in their prison admissions and populations due to supervision violations in 2020. But some states were already experiencing reductions in violation admissions and population prior to the pandemic. This snapshot shows available supervision violation data for Wisconsin from 2018 through 2020.


From 2018 to 2020, Wisconsin saw a 42 percent decline in the number of prison admissions due to supervision violations.

The breakdown

Total Admissions Violation Admissions Technical Violation Admissions
Total 2018 2019 2020
Total admissions 9,374 9,205 5,209
Total Violation admissions 6,556 6,331 3,771
Probation admissions 2,718 2,443 1,346
Parole admissions 3,838 3,888 2,425
Total Technical Violation admissions 4,068 3,962 2,704
Probation admissions 1,644 1,443 877
Parole admissions 2,424 2,519 1,827
Total New Offense admissions 2,488 2,369 1,067
Probation admissions 1,074 1,000 469
Parole admissions 1,414 1,369 598

From 2018 to 2020, Wisconsin saw a 20 percent decline in the number of people in prison due to supervision violations.

The breakdown

Total Population Violation Population Technical Violation Population
Total 2018 2019 2020
Total population 23,865 23,778 20,121
Total Violation population 12,374 12,163 9,933
Probation population 4,914 4,677 3,643
Parole population 7,460 7,486 6,290
Total Technical Violation population 5,171 5,125 4,347
Probation population 1,987 1,837 1,429
Parole population 3,184 3,288 2,918
Total New Offense population 7,203 7,038 5,586
Probation population 2,927 2,840 2,214
Parole population 4,276 4,198 3,372

Additional State Notes

Admission and population counts for technical violations vs. new offense violations change as individuals who were initially coded as committing a technical violation receive a new sentence at a later date for the behavior that led to the violation. This decreases the number of technical violations and increases the number of new offense violations. However some individuals admitted to prison for violations of supervision who eventually receive new sentences may not receive an updated admission type if the new sentence occurs long after the admission to prison.

Total admission and population counts include not only the counts for technical violations and new offense violations, but also new sentences to prison, interstate compact, and individuals returning to Wisconsin after serving sentences in other states or Federal prisons. A small number of individuals (fewer than five) admitted for short-term sanctions were included in total admissions but were not included in the violation admissions count because the admission type for sanctions does not specify whether the person was on probation or post-prison supervision.

Whether an incarceration is the result of a new offense or technical violation is often difficult and problematic to delineate, even in states with available data. Most states do not consider a supervision violation to be the result of a new offense unless a new felony conviction is present, meaning technical violations may include misdemeanor convictions or new arrests. "Prison" includes county jail if the county was reimbursed by the state for a person’s incarceration, which occurs in some, but not all, states. Supervision violations may include revocations (i.e., unsuccessful terminations of a supervision and completion of a sentence in prison or jail) or short-term sanctions (i.e., probation or parole jurisdiction is maintained and the person is incarcerated for a short period of time in prison or jail). Not all states impose or include short-term sanctions in their count of supervision violations.