Diaspora News

Hate crimes continue to rise in LA County

Image by lasentinel.net

THE Los Angeles County Commission on Human Relations (LACCHR) has reported that data on hate crimes in Los Angeles County in 2017 showed a five percent increase from the previous year.

The LACCHR report said there were 508 hate crimes reported in the County in 2017. For the past four years, hate crimes have been trending upwards and there has been a 32% rise since 2014.

Fifty percent of all hate crimes were racially-motivated and they increased 9% from 235 to 256. After declining significantly the previous year, anti-black hate crimes rose 15% from 112 to 129.

African Americans only comprise 9% of L.A. County residents but make up 50% of racial hate crime victims.

African Americans were also over-represented as victims of sexual orientation and anti-transgender crimes. Anti-Latino/a crimes rose for the third year in a row, from 62 to 72, a 16% increase.

Latino/as were the most likely of any racial/ethnic group to be victims of violent racially-motivated crime (77%). Suspects used anti-immigrant slurs in 40% of these cases.

Crimes targeting gay men, lesbians and LGBT organizations declined slightly (2%) but constituted 21% of all reported hate crimes. It was noted that 100% of anti-lesbian crimes were of violent nature.

Seventy-six percent of these crimes were of a violent nature, a rate higher than those motivated by race (63%) or religion (20%).

There were 101 religious crimes, the same number as the previous year. They comprised 20% of all hate crimes and 72% were anti-Jewish.

For the second year in a row, a record number of anti-transgender crimes were reported (33) and 94% were of a violent nature.

The overall rate of violence declined from 61% to 56% but aggravated assaults rose 47%.

There were 9 hate crimes reported in which the suspects referenced President Trump’s name.

Hate crimes occurred throughout Los Angeles County, but the largest number took place in the San Fernando Valley, followed by the Metro region that stretches from West Hollywood to Boyle Heights.

The highest rate of hate crimes occurred in the Metro region, followed by the western part of the county that includes a number of affluent beach cities.

Putting an end to hate crimes is a top priority for the County of Los Angeles,” said Board of Supervisors Chair Sheila Kuehl, adding “we live in one of the most culturally diverse places in the world with more than 200 languages and cultures enriching the region. Hate violence, white nationalism, misogyny, and all forms of intolerance are not welcome here.”

We are extremely concerned that reported hate crimes in L.A. County have been trending upwards for four years in a row,” said Robin Toma, LACCHR Executive Director.

The rise in L.A. County mirrors increases in hate crimes in most major U.S. cities in 2017.”

We are truly alarmed at the continued over-representation of African Americans in racial hate crimes and the extremely high rates of violence directed against gay men, lesbians and transgender victims,” said Commission President Jarret Barrios.


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