The Better Government Association, Injustice Watch and DataMade have broken down more than three million criminal charges by race, ethnicity and gender.
Data are reinforcing concerns about the Cook County criminal justice system disproportionately affecting Black communities. The project looks at over three million cases filed between 2000 and 2018.
Of those cases, more than 61% were filed against Black people, even though only about 23% of the county’s population is Black. That percentage is much higher for some charges. Research suggests the disparity has more to do with social inequity than an inherent link between race and criminality.