California anti-gay hate crimes down 12.5 percent in 2011Breaking News, Top Highlights Wednesday, September 5th, 2012
SAN FRANCISCO – A report from the California attorney general’s office published yesterday reveals that hate crimes involving a sexual orientation bias decreased 12.5 percent, from 279 in 2010 to 244 in 2011. Sexual orientation hate crimes were the second most common type of hate crime, comprising 23 percent of hate crimes reported in 2011.
Within this category, hate crimes with an anti-homosexual motivation are the most common, accounting for 10.5 percent of all hate crimes in 2011. Prior to 2010, anti-gay motived hate crimes were the most common but have decreased 58.8 percent since 2002.
Overall, the number of reported hate crimes in California decreased by 4 percent in 2011.
There were 1,060 hate crime events reported statewide in 2011, a decrease from the 1,107 hate crime events reported in 2010.
Announcing the report Attorney General Kamala D. Harris said, “There is no place in our inclusive Golden State for hate crimes and their destruction of what makes California so special. I welcome the decrease in these senseless crimes and commend state and local law enforcement for their efforts to protect every Californian.”
Hate crimes with race/ethnicity/national origin account for the most common type of hate crime in the last 10 years and represented 57.5 percent of all hate crime events in 2011. Anti-black hate crimes account for 29.5 percent of all hate crimes. Since 2002, anti-Hispanic hate crimes have decreased by 43.6 percent.
Hate crimes events involving a religious bias have increased slightly, from 198 in 2010 to 201 in 2011. Anti-Jewish hate crimes continue to be most common, accounting for 8 percent of all hate crimes reported since 2002. Of the 201 hate crimes involving a religious bias in 2011, 132 were anti-Jewish.
All police agencies and district attorney’s offices in California, in cooperation with the Department of Justice, have developed local data collection programs and submitted hate crime statistics for this report. Categories are established by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
A total of 313 hate crime cases were referred to prosecutors in 2011, and 253 cases were filed for prosecution. Of the 253 filed, 204 were filed as hate crimes. Of the 161 cases with a disposition available for this report, 46 percent (74) were hate crime convictions, 50 percent (80) were other convictions and 4 percent (7) were not convicted.
The hate crime reporting system was implemented by the Department of Justice in 1994. Law enforcement agencies are required to submit copies of initial crime reports to the department, and each agency has established procedures incorporating a two-tier review process. The first level is done by the initial officer who responded to the suspected hate crime incident. Then each report is reviewed by at least one other officer to confirm that the event was, in fact, a hate crime.
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