Hate Crimes Decline Per US Department of Justice
Hate Crimes Up 20 Percent???
Hate crimes in nine U.S. metropolitan areas rose more than 20 percent last year, fueled by inflamed passions during the presidential campaign and more willingness for victims to step forward, a leading hate crimes researcher said on Monday.
Bias crimes appeared to increase in some cities following the Nov. 8 election of President Donald Trump, a trend that has extended into this year with a wave of bomb threats and desecrations at synagogues and Jewish cemeteries
The data was collected by the Center for the Study of Hate & Extremism at California State University, San Bernardino. The new numbers, collected from police departments, reverse a trend toward fewer hate crimes in many of the cities in recent years, NBC News.
We have two measures of hate crimes reported above, one touting a 20 percent increase, and one from the US Department of Justice stating that hate crimes have decreased. See graphic below.
Brain freeze anyone?
If you search for the term, “hate crime” or “hate crime increase,” be prepared for an endless list of articles from multiple reputable sources stating that hate crimes are skyrocketing, principally propelled by President Donald Trump.
I could not find a reference to the US Department of Justice document used for this article in initial pages of search.
The data used here describe the different terms used by the National Crime Survey (reported and unreported crimes) and the FBI’s Uniform Crime Report (reported crimes).
Every measure of hate crime will be different (i.e., the FBI also collects information on vandalism and crimes directed towards organizations). But National Crime Survey data records substantially more crime, and with it being charted over many years, it’s clearly the most reliable source, thus NCS findings are used for this article. A link to FBI data is below for your convenience.
There are hate “remarks” (i.e., disparaging statements) that are not recorded by the National Crime Survey or the FBI because they are not criminal acts.
Needless to say, hate crimes are not only repugnant but destroy the fabric of American society. My Jewish, black and gay friends tell stories of bias that stay with them for a lifetime. We are one America, and it’s up to all of us to respect all Americans.
In 2015, the rate of violent hate crime victimization was 0.7 hate crimes per 1,000 persons age 12 or older.
This rate was not significantly different from the rate in 2004 (0.9 per 1,000).
The absence of change in rates from 2004 to 2015 generally held true for violent hate crimes both reported and unreported to police.
However, between 2012 and 2015, the rate of unreported violent hate crime declined slightly, from 0.6 to 0.3 victimizations per 1,000 persons.
Data Collection Definitions
Findings are primarily from the Bureau of Justice Statistics’ (BJS) National Crime Survey (NCS), which has collected data on crimes motivated by hate since 2003.
The NCS and the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Hate Crime Statistics Program are the principal sources of annual information on hate crime in the United States.
BJS and the FBI use the hate crime definition established by the Hate Crime Statistics Act “crimes that manifest evidence of prejudice based on race, gender or gender identity, religion, disability, sexual orientation, or ethnicity.”
The NCS measures crimes perceived by victims to be motivated by an offender’s bias against them for belonging to or being associated with a group largely identified by these characteristics.
Hate crime victimization refers to a single victim or household that experienced a criminal incident believed to be motivated by hate. For violent crimes (rape or sexual assault, robbery, aggravated assault, and simple assault) and for personal larceny, the count of hate crime victimizations is the number of individuals who experienced a violent hate crime.
Trend estimates are based on 2-year rolling averages centered on the most recent year. For example, estimates reported for 2015 represent the average estimates for 2014 and 2015.
The report also presents comparisons between the NCS and the UCR program in terms of overall trends in hate crime victimization and the type of bias that motivated the crime.
No significant change was observed in the number of violent or property hate crimes from 2004 to 2015.
On average, U.S. residents experienced approximately 250,000 hate crime victimizations each year between 2004 and 2015, of which about 230,000 were violent hate victimizations.
The number of total and violent hate crime victimizations did not change significantly from 2004 to 2015.
Violent hate crime victimizations accounted for 4% of all violent victimizations.
Reasons for Hate
Racial bias was the most common motivation for hate crimes during 2011–15.
The NCS asked hate crime victims about the types of bias they suspected motivated the crime. During the aggregated 5-year period from 2011 to 2015, victims suspected that nearly half (48%) of hate crime victimizations were motivated by racial bias.
About a third of victims believed they were targeted because of their ethnicity (35%) or their gender (29%).
About 1 in 5 believed the hate crime was motivated by bias against persons or groups with which they were associated (23%) or by sexual orientation (22%).
About 1 in 6 hate crime victimizations were thought to be motivated by bias against the victim’s religion (17%) or disability (16%).
Between 2007 and 2015, the percentage of hate crimes perceived by victims to be motivated by racial bias decreased from 62% to 48%.
During that time, the percentage of hate crimes suspected to be motivated by gender bias nearly doubled from 15% in 2007 to 29% in 2015.
During 2011-15, males and females had similar rates of hate crime victimization.
Hispanics (1.3 per 1,000) experienced a higher rate of violent hate victimization than non-Hispanic whites (0.7 per 1,000). By rate, blacks were second and whites third.
More than half (53%) of hate crime victimizations were against whites.
For both hate and non-hate violent crime victimizations, young persons ages 12 to 17 had a higher rate of victimization than persons age 50 or older.
In both hate and non-hate violent victimizations, persons in households in the lowest income bracket had the highest rate of victimization than all other income categories.
Nearly half (46%) of violent hate crime victimizations were committed by a stranger.
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Leonard Adam Sipes, Jr. – Thirty-five years of speaking for national and state criminal justice agencies. Former Senior Specialist for Crime Prevention for the Department of Justice’s clearinghouse. Former Director of Information Services, National Crime Prevention Council. Post-Masters’ Certificate of Advanced Study-Johns Hopkins University.