Hate crimes are on the rise in California. At least, that's according to a new report issued by California Attorney General Xavier Becerra.
According to the disturbing new report, there were 931 incidents in 2016, an increase of more than 11% over the previous year. More than half of the incidents reported involved a bias based on race, ethnicity, or national origin. The second-most-common incidents were based on a person's sexual orientation.
- The number of hate crimes increased 11.2% from 837 incidents in 2015, to 931 in 2016.
- Overall, the total number of hate crime events have declined by 34.7% between 2007 and 2016.
- Hate crimes with a racial bias are most common, accounting for 57% of all incidents since 2007.
- In 2016, 64.5% of hate crimes were violent crime offenses, with 35% property crime.
The report says race-based hate crimes jumped more than 21%. In a statement issued by Becerra, the report is consistent with another national report that saw an increase in hate crimes.
“When someone commits a crime motivated by hate, it is not just an attack on one innocent person, but an attack on the entire State and our communities,” Becerra said in a statement. “We can see from today's report that words matter, and discriminatory rhetoric does not make us stronger but divides us and puts the safety of our communities at risk.”
The report gathers its data from the Criminal Justice Statistics Center. The Hate Crime database is submitted to the Department of Justice every month by various law enforcement agencies throughout the state.
A 'hate crime' as listed in the report is considered to be the intent of someone to cause another person physical injury, emotional suffering, or property damage where there is reasonable cause to believe that the crime was motivated by the victim's race, ethnicity, religion, gender or sexual orientation.
You can read the full report on the Open Justice's Website here.