I think the higher incarceration rate may be because now we have more ways to track down criminals (cameras fingerprints) not because police are just throwing people into jail.
We’ll look at race first. The united states has 693 people in prison per 100,000. However if we quickly glance at the Incarceration in the United States page, we can see the incarceration rate broken down by race. While white people are incarcerated at a rate of 450 per 100,000, Hispanic people are incarcerated at almost double the rate ( 831 per 100,000) and black people at an astoundingly high rate of 2,306 per 100,000. So lets consider a hypothetical prison system that doesn’t discriminate by race, we assume that the default incarceration rate for everyone is an equal 450 per 100,000. By doing that alone the United States falls from first place to 11th.
We can also look at the breakdown by crime committed. Around 22% of prisoners are in state and federal prison for non-violent drug related crimes. 22% of 450 is 99. So if drug usage was legalized, this further reduces the rate of incarceration to 351. The united states would then be in 24th place.
Even with these reductions, the incarceration rate is more than triple that of other equally developed countries, like France, the Uk, and Germany. Its more than 5 times that of Norway, the Netherlands and Denmark. All of these countries have comparable law enforcement technology to the united states.
These are just some quick estimates that take into account some readily available and easy to work with information. We haven’t even considered things like private prison profit incentives, private prison quotas, and public policy. Quoting from wikipedia, “ Violent crime was not responsible for the quadrupling of the incarcerated population in the United States from 1980 to 2003. Violent crime rates had been relatively constant or declining over those decades. The prison population was increased primarily by public policy changes causing more prison sentences and lengthening time served, e.g. through mandatory minimum sentencing, “three strikes” laws, and reductions in the availability of parole or early release. 49 percent of sentenced state inmates were held for violent offenses. Perhaps the single greatest force behind the growth of the prison population has been the national “War on Drugs.” ”
So no, more technology being available hasn’t resulted in the United State’s insane incarceration rates. Institutional racism, a bullshit “war on drugs”, and vindictive laws that line the pockets of private prisons are. Don’t let ideology fool you, the United States is objectively one of the least free countries.