The Justice Department says the prison and jail population in the United States rose almost three percent in the year ending June 30.
Two-thirds were in federal or state prisons with the other third held in jails.
Virginia's state prison population increased 7.4-percent from 2001 to 2002, with the tally of inmates at state prisons at 32,739.
A group called The Sentencing Project attributes the nationwide increase to get-tough policies for drug offenses and three-strikes laws.
The federal government accounted for more inmates than any state, with almost 162,000.
The report did not count all juvenile offenders.