State Releases New Hate Crime in California Report

This week, California Attorney General Rob Bonta released the 2022 Hate Crime in California Report, and highlighted information and resources to support ongoing efforts across the state to combat hate. Overall, reported hate crime events in California increased 20.2% from 1,763 in 2021 to 2,120 in 2022. 

      Reported hate crimes targeting Black people remain the most prevalent and increased 27.1% from 513 in 2021 to 652 in 2022, while reported anti-Asian hate crime events decreased by 43.3% from 247 in 2021 to 140 in 2022. Reported hate crime events involving a sexual orientation bias also increased, rising 29% from 303 in 2021 to 391 in 2022. 

      Amidst this surge in reported hate crime offenses and events, Attorney General Bonta urged law enforcement to recommit themselves to taking action. To that end, Bonta issued an updated Law Enforcement Bulletin to all district attorneys, chiefs of police, sheriffs, and state law enforcement agencies with an updated summary of the multiple California criminal laws that prohibit hate crimes or provide enhanced penalties for specified hate-related acts, as well as guidance related to the investigation and prosecution of hate crimes. 

      The Attorney General continues to convene law enforcement, elected leaders, and community organizations at the local level across the state to help increase awareness around available resources and strengthen responses to hate crime in California.

      “This report is a stark reminder that there is still much work to be done to combat hate in our state. I urge local partners and law enforcement to review these findings and recommit to taking action,” said Attorney General Bonta. “Our office continues to work with law enforcement, elected leaders, and community organizations across the state to increase awareness and bolster responses to hate crimes. An attack against one of us is an attack against all of us. 

      “The alarming increases in crimes committed against Black, LGBTQ+ and Jewish people for the second year in a row illustrates the need for our communities to join together unified against hate. It takes all of us working together to combat extremism and foster a safe and inclusive environment for all Californians. Now, more than ever, it is critical that we stand united — there is no place for hate in California.”

      Other key findings from the 2022 Hate Crime in California Report include the following: 

• 2,589 hate crime offenses were reported in California, increasing by 16.6% from 2021.

• Hate crime events motivated by a sexual orientation bias increased 29% from 303 in 2021 to 391 in 2022.

• Anti-Hispanic bias crimes rose from 197 in 2021 to 210 in 2022.

• Anti-Asian bias events fell from 247 in 2021 to 140 in 2022, a decrease of 43.3%.

• Anti-Jewish bias events increased 24.3% from 152 in 2021 to 189 in 2022.

• Anti-Protestant bias events rose from 2 in 2021 to 12 in 2022. 

• Anti-Islamic (Muslim) bias crimes rose from 18 in 2021 to 25 in 2022.

• Anti-transgender bias events increased from 38 in 2021 to 59 in 2022. 

• Anti-gay (male) bias events increased 28.4% from 211 in 2021 to 271 in 2022

• Anti-lesbian bias crimes rose from 27 in 2021 to 33 in 2022.

If you believe you or someone you know has been the victim of a hate crime, notify local law enforcement and consider taking the following steps: 

• Write down the exact words that were used and take note of any other relevant facts.

• If safe to do so, save all evidence and take photos.

• Get the contact information for other victims and witnesses.

• Reach out to community organizations in your area that deal with hate crimes or incidents.

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