HRC: New FBI hate-crimes statistics "harrowing"

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Hate crimes in America rose by about 5 percent in 2016, according to data released by the Federal Bureau of Investigation on Monday.

More specifically, approximately 50 percent of the crimes were related to racial bias against Blacks, while 20 percent represented bias against Whites, 11 percent represented bias against Hispanics/Latinos, and 7 percent represented bias against American Indian and Asian groups.

Of 111 hate-crimes reported by law enforcement agencies in IL, 21 were on the basis of sexual orientation and three were on the basis of gender identity. Additionally there were 58 multiple-bias hate crime incidents involving 106 victims. In March, HRC joined 155 other civil and human rights organizations [ www.hrc.org/blog/156-civil-and-human-rights-groups-call-for-stronger-response-to-hate-incide ] in urging the Trump administration to more strongly respond to bias-motivated acts of violence and intimidation.

One such murder victim was transgender 16-year-old Kedarie Johnson, who was shot and killed in March of 2016 in what prosecutors have labeled a hate crime.

The report was based on data voluntarily submitted by about 15,000 law enforcement agencies.

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It was the second year in a row the number of reported hate crimes has increased, after a slight decrease from 2013 to 2014.

A bill that would've introduced a hate crime law in IN died in the legislature on the same day that the Indianapolis Jewish Community Center received a bomb threat. Anti-Jewish bias continued to lead in those offenses, accounting for 54.4 percent of cases. Of the 5,770 known offenders, 46 percent were white, and 26 percent were African-American.

There were 1,076 incidents involving lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender people, with nearly two-thirds of those targeting gay men.

"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", attorney general Jeff Sessions said in a statement. The community has been a victim of hate crimes as they are usually mistaken as Arabs due to their turbans.

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