- The Washington Times - Tuesday, October 17, 2006

More than half of the hate crimes reported last year by police agencies nationwide were motivated by racial bias and many involved intimidation, according to a report released yesterday by the FBI.

The report, by the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting Program, said that 55 percent of the 7,163 reported single-bias incidents last year were motivated by racial bias — an increase of one percentage point. The overall number represents a 6 percent drop from 7,649 in 2004.

Religious bias triggered 17 percent of incidents cited in the report, followed by 14 percent for sexual-orientation bias and 13.2 percent by an ethnicity or national-origin bias. Less than 1 percent involved bias against a disability.

The report also noted that of 5,190 hate-crime offenses classified as crimes against people in 2005, intimidation accounted for 48.9 percent of them, followed by simple assaults at 30.2 percent and aggravated assaults at 20.5 percent.

The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) yesterday called the 2005 report “clearly incomplete,” saying it did not include hate-crime data from two of the largest cities in America: New York and Phoenix. It called the report “a setback to the progress the bureau has made in the program over the past 15 years.”

“New York City, which has been a model for police agencies on response to hate violence over the years, and Phoenix should provide their hate-crime data to the FBI as quickly as possible and take steps to ensure timely, full participation in the future,” said Deborah M. Lauter, ADL director of civil rights.

“It is also disappointing that thousands of smaller police departments across the country also did not participate in this data-collection effort.”

The FBI did not comment on the report.

During 2005, the FBI said the 7,163 criminal incidents involved 8,380 offenses and were reported by city, county, state, federal and tribal law-enforcement agencies nationwide.

A hate crime, also known as a bias crime, is a criminal offense committed against a person, property or society that is motivated, in whole or in part, by the offender’s bias against a race, religion, disability, sexual orientation or ethnicity/national origin.

Virginia reported 295 hate crime incidents last year, down from 307 in 2004; followed by Maryland with 195, down from 245 in 2004; and the District with 48, down from 49 in 2004.

The 2005 report also said:

• Of the 3,109 hate-crime offenses classified as crimes against property, 53.6 percent were directed at persons, 9.8 percent were against businesses or financial institutions, 8.9 percent were against government and 6.8 percent were against religious organizations.

• A total of 20.9 percent of the reported hate crimes were directed at other, multiple or unknown victim types. Damage/destruction/vandalism was the most frequently reported crime against property, accounting for 81.3 percent of the total.

According to the report, of the 6,804 known offenders reported in 2005, 60.5 percent were white and 19.9 percent were black. The race was unknown for 12.3 percent and other races accounted for the remaining known offenders.

It also said that the majority — about 30 percent — of hate-crime incidents in 2005 occurred in or near residences or homes.

Copyright © 2018 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.

The Washington Times Comment Policy

The Washington Times welcomes your comments on Spot.im, our third-party provider. Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.


Click to Read More and View Comments

Click to Hide