HRC Blog

FBI Releases Annual Hate Crime Statistics Publication for 2010

Today, the Federal Bureau of Investigation released its annual Hate Crime Statistics publication for the year 2010. The report, which details hate crimes reported by states, municipalities and universities, provides a  partial snapshot of the number of hate crimes committed on a range of categories, including sexual orientation. The report concludes that 19.3% of all hate crimes, or 1,528 incidents, were the result of sexual orientation bias.

The percentage of victims targeted because of sexual orientation bias continues to trend upward among the overall number of reported hate crimes from 2008 (17.7%) and 2009 (18.5%). Overall, the number of reported hate crimes increased slightly this year and across all distinguishing characteristics. Even so, these numbers represent only a sample of the actual number of hate crimes that occurred in 2010.  A crime is included in the report only if a law enforcement agency decides to report it to the FBI. Because reporting to the FBI is voluntary, countless incidents go unreported by both victims and agencies every year.  Thus, the FBI’s hate crime statistics report provides an incomplete picture of the total number of hate crimes that occur in any given year.

As a result of the 2009 Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr., Hate Crimes Prevention Act, the FBI will continue to implement changes to collect additional data for crimes motivated by gender or gender identity.

For more information about the status of hate crime protections in your state, see HRC’s recently released report: A Guide to State Level Hate Crime Protections Following the Enactment of the Hate Crimes Prevention Act

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