Hate crimes up in California, and USA, for second consecutive year

Hate crimes up in California, and USA, for second consecutive year

Kerry Wise
November 14, 2017

There were more than 6,100 hate crimes last year, up about 5 percent over the previous year. Oakland, by contrast, reported less hate crimes: From 18 in 2015, down to nine past year.

In incidents where the perpetrators were identified, the Federal Bureau of Investigation found that about 58% of crimes were motivated by the victims' race, ethnicity or ancestry. The FBI's report shows a four-and-a-half percent increase nationally in hate crimes.

Meanwhile, nearly one in five of last year's hate crimes were motivated by prejudices related to sexual orientation, 63 percent of them targeting gay men.

It is crucial to note, however, while this is the most comprehensive report of hate crimes, it is still incomplete.

Going forward. The FBI, through its UCR Program, will continue to collect and disseminate information on hate crime-as a means to educate and increase awareness of these types of crimes for the public as well as for law enforcement, government, community leaders, civic organizations, and researchers around the country.

An unrelated report released in February found the number of hate groups in the U.S. Hate incidents increased from 203 in 2015 to 285 in 2016.

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The Southern Poverty Law Center, a non-profit which tracks hate groups, attributed the bump to the 2016 presidential election, in which Donald Trump assailed Muslims and Hispanics as extremists and illegal immigrants.

In California, the numbers also rose along with the rest of the nation: From 837 hate crimes in 2015 to 931 in 2016.

"No person should have to fear being violently attacked because of who they are, what they believe, of how they worship", Attorney General Jeff Sessions said in a statement on Monday.

Anti-Catholic crimes also increased by 9 incidents.

Meanwhile, 21% of crimes were motivated by religion and almost 18% by a victim's sexual orientation. No reported crimes were motivated by a disability, gender or gender identity.