Published: Mon, November 13, 2017
World | By Paul Elliott

FBI Stats Show Rise in Hate Crimes Last Year

FBI Stats Show Rise in Hate Crimes Last Year

The FBI numbers come as reports of bias-fueled incidents have increased over the past year, heightening a sense of unease nationwide. And Jews were targeted in more than half the 1,538 crimes that were motivated by religion. About 20 percent of the victims were singled out because of religious bias, and majority were anti-Jewish attacks.

Hate crimes in the United States increased by nearly five percent in 2016, when the country registered 6,121 acts of this type, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) announced today.

According to Uniform Crime Reporting data released Monday , there were 6,121 incidents across the country in 2016, with more than half driven by the victim's race or ethnicity. Crimes fueled by bias against LGBT people rose from 203 in 2015 to 234 past year. But the number of anti-black crimes remained about even with the number reported in 2015.

Several incidents of vandalism at Las Palmas Mexican Grocery in Brookline, including a brick through its window in January and a mural defaced with the words "illegal trespassers", "liars" and "America haters" in April, were not charged as hate crimes , said Pittsburgh Public Safety spokeswoman Sonya Toler.

Anti-transgender hate crime jumped by 44 percent, anti-Arab incidents surged by 38 percent, anti-Muslim hate crime rose 19.5 percent, anti-white hate crime increased 17.5 percent, and anti-Latino hate-motivated incidents jumped by 15 percent.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions said the Justice Department is now engaging with state and local leaders and to find ways to better prevent and prosecute hate crimes.

"The Department of Justice is committed to ensuring that individuals can live without fear of being a victim of violent crime based on who they are, what they believe, or how they worship", Mr. Sessions said.

But Bethel Park was not among the municipalities listed as contributing data to the federal crime report.

Anti-Catholic crimes also increased by 9 incidents. In Ogden there were 4 reports of hate crimes against someone's sexual orientation; in all there were nine reports of sexual orientation hate crimes. Crimes motivated by gender identity-bias accounted for 124 incidents.

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