There were 6,121 reported hate crimes in the US in 2016, according to new FBI statistics. This is a 5% increase from 2015, making it the second year in a row hate crimes rose.
Furthermore, there were another 7,321 related offenses stemming from bias against race, religion, sexual orientation, and other traits.
The FBI gathered their information from 15,254 law enforcement agencies.
It is crucial to note, however, while this is the most comprehensive report of hate crimes, it is still incomplete. These incidents are due mostly to voluntary reporting from the various agencies. There is more of a focused effort on reporting these crimes in today’s political climate.
Of the 6,121 criminal incidents, a majority were driven by race and ethnicity.
57.5% were motivated by these factors, while 21% stemmed from religion, 17.7% from sexual orientation, and the remaining rates (all 2% or less) came from gender, gender identity, and disability.
There were 7,615 victims. A majority of the victims — 4,720 — were people and 2,813 happened to property.
In the FBI’s press release, the types of hate crimes were classified as intimidation (44.7%), simple assault (35.7%), and aggravated assault (18.5%).
Most of the property crimes (75.9%) were destruction/vandalism, while arson, robbery, and more accounted for the other 24.1%.
Hate crimes happened in a variety of locations. Most occurred in or near residences as well as roadways.
Number one priority
These numbers correlate with the NCAVP’s recent report. In those findings, the organization determined more LGBTI people have died in hate-related homicides in 2017 so far than all of 2016.
The FBI further said hate crimes remain the number one priority for their civil rights unit.
Attorney General Jeff Sessions also doubled down on the importance of addressing 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,’ he said in response to the FBI’s report.