Police Underreport Hate Crimes to FBI, Hindering Efforts to Combat the Crimes

hate-photo-of-handBy Steve Neavling

It’s difficult to know how often hate crimes are committed because many communities don’t share the information with the FBI.

The Associated Press analyzed police data that is given to the FBI and discovered that more than 2,700 city police and county sheriff’s departments have never submitted a hate crime report in the past six years. That’s about 17% of all city and county law enforcement agencies nationwide.

The FBI and others say more accurate reporting would increase efforts to combat hate crimes.

“We need the reporting to happen,” said the Rev. Raphael Warnock, pastor of Atlanta’s historic Ebenezer Baptist Church, where King preached. “Without a diagnosis, we don’t know how serious the illness is. And without a diagnosis, there is no prescription. And without a prescription, there is no healing.”

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