FBI reports decrease in overall hate crime, but increase in violent hate crime

FBI reports decrease in overall hate crime, but increase in violent hate crime
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The FBI on Tuesday released its annual hate crime data report, which showed a slight decline in hate crimes last year but an increase in violent hate crimes.

There were a total of 7,120 hate crimes reported to the FBI last year, which is down from 7,175 incidents reported in 2017. However, the number of violent hate crimes, which the FBI defines as murders or killings, rapes, aggravated assaults and robberies, totaled 1,204, up from 1,183 in 2017. 

The number of people who were killed in violent hate crimes also spiked last year.

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A total of 24 people, including the 11 killed in a mass shooting at a Pittsburgh synagogue, were killed in hate-motivated incidents last year. In 2017, 15 people were killed in hate-fueled incidents. 

The number of people affected by incidents motivated by race, sexual orientation and gender identity also increased last year.

In 2018, 5,155 people were victims of racially motivated crimes, up from 5,060 victims in 2017. There was also an increase in the number of hate crimes directed at members of the Hispanic and Latino communities, up from 552 victims in 2017 to 671 victims in 2018.

There were 1,445 victims of hate crimes motivated by sexual orientation in 2018, up from 1,338 victims in 2017. There were also 189 victims of gender identity-motivated violence, up from 132 in the previous year. Crimes motivated by gender-identity affect transgender and gender nonconforming people. 

Hate crimes targeting people based on their religion was down from 1,749 to 1,617.

The 2018 data was submitted to the FBI by 16,039 law enforcement agencies. 

FBI Director Christopher Wray recently testified before the FBI on racially motivated extremism. He told the House that U.S. extremists often connect with foreign extremists or are inspired by foreign incidents.