(AP) The Northeast Ohio Media Group reports that prospect raises concerns that crowded conditions could lead to violence.

The media group reports that prison officials project the number of inmates to reach a record 51,601 by June 30. That's more than 4,100 higher that what state officials predicted in 2012.

Prison experts and state officials warn that prison crowding leads to more inmate violence.

The Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction director has said that crowding may have been a factor in a recent rash of prison suicides.

State officials and prison experts attribute the rise in prison numbers partly to an increase in crime.