Tuesday, October 17, 2006

FBI Release Hate Crime Data for 2005

SignOnSanDiego.com > News > Nation -- Hate crimes down, but most victims targeted for race, FBI reports The UCR is still being released - a section at a time. The Hate Crime Data was recently released.

Assault is the most common form of a hate crime, at 50.7% of all hate crimes.

Racically motivated attacks account for 54.7% of all hate crimes. 17% of attacks are motivated by religion, and 14.2% by sexual orientation.

Total incidents = 7,163
Total offenses = 8,380 (one incident can include multiple cases of assault for example...)

If you want to dig through the numbers you should visit the FBI's Web site. The FBI has done a great job in the past year of making the numbers easier to get at, and of course they still publish the raw data in spreadsheets.

There is one thing that should be mentioned. The hate crime data are problematic - even more so than the base data for the UCR. (For example, Illinois provided no data at all for the 2005 UCR) The Hate Crime data are dependent on the various police jurisdictions reporting the crimes as hate crimes. Not all of the jurisdictions in America are able to do this. The National Incident Based Reporting System (which actually goes by several names) is not actually a single software system for use by all police officers. It accepts data from their systems - or not as in the case of Illinois. The big cities by and large report the data, but suburban jusrisdictions may not. The bottom line is that while the percentages are probably valid, the total numbers may be artifically low, due to a systematic data collection problem. Your tax dollars at work.

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