Incidents and Offenses

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For each hate crime offense type reported, law enforcement must indicate at least one bias motivation. A single-bias incident is defined as an incident in which one or more offense types are motivated by the same bias. A multiple-bias incident is defined as an incident in which more than one offense type occurs and at least two offense types are motivated by different biases.

  • In 2009, 2,034 law enforcement agencies reported 6,604 hate crime incidents involving 7,789 offenses.
  • There were 6,598 single-bias incidents that involved 7,775 offenses, 8,322 victims, and 6,219 offenders.
  • The 6 multiple-bias incidents reported in 2009 involved 14 offenses, 14 victims, and 6 offenders. (See Tables 1 and 12.)

Single-bias incidents

An analysis of the 6,598 single-bias incidents reported in 2009 showed the following:

  • 48.5 percent were motivated by racial bias.
  • 19.7 percent resulted from religious bias.
  • 18.5 percent were linked to sexual-orientation bias.
  • 11.8 percent stemmed from ethnicity/national origin bias.
  • 1.5 percent involved disability bias. (Based on Table 1.)

Offenses by bias motivation within incidents

Of the 7,775 single-bias hate crime offenses reported in the above incidents:

  • 49.1 percent stemmed from racial bias.
  • 18.5 percent were motivated by sexual-orientation bias.
  • 17.7 percent resulted from religious bias.
  • 13.5 percent were prompted by ethnicity/national origin bias.
  • 1.2 percent were from biases against disabilities. (Based on Table 1.)

Racial bias

In 2009, law enforcement agencies reported that 3,816 single-bias hate crime offenses were racially motivated. Of these offenses:

  • 71.4 percent were motivated by anti-black bias.
  • 17.1 percent resulted from anti-white bias.
  • 5.5 percent occurred because of biases against groups of individuals consisting of more than one race (anti-multiple races, group).
  • 3.9 percent resulted from anti-Asian/Pacific Islander bias.
  • 2.2 percent were motivated by anti-American Indian/Alaskan Native bias. (Based on Table 1.)

Religious bias

Law enforcement agencies reported 1,376 hate crimes motivated by religious bias. A breakdown of biases for these offenses showed:

  • 70.1 percent were anti-Jewish.
  • 9.3 percent were anti-Islamic.
  • 8.6 percent were anti-other religion.
  • 4.4 percent were anti-multiple religions, group.
  • 4.0 percent were anti-Catholic.
  • 2.9 percent were anti-Protestant.
  • 0.7 percent were anti-Atheism/Agnosticism/etc. (Based on Table 1.)

Sexual-orientation bias

Law enforcement agencies reported 1,436 hate crime offenses based on sexual-orientation bias. Of these offenses:

  • 55.6 percent were motivated by anti-male homosexual bias.
  • 26.2 percent resulted from anti-homosexual bias.
  • 15.0 percent were prompted by anti-female homosexual bias.
  • 1.7 percent were classified as anti-bisexual bias.
  • 1.5 percent were the result of anti-heterosexual bias. (Based on Table 1.)

Ethnicity/national origin bias

In 2009, law enforcement reported 1,050 offenses were committed based on the perceived ethnicity or national origin of the victim. Of these offenses:

  • 62.3 percent were motivated by anti-Hispanic bias.
  • 37.7 percent resulted from anti-other ethnicity/national origin bias. (Based on Table 1.)

Disability bias

There were 97 reported hate crime offenses committed based on disability bias. Of these:

  • 72 offenses were prompted by anti-mental disability bias.
  • 25 offenses were the result of anti-physical disability bias. (See Table 1.)

By offense type

Of the 7,789 reported hate crime offenses in 2009:

  • 31.6 percent were destruction/damage/vandalism.
  • 27.7 percent were intimidation.
  • 21.7 percent were simple assault.
  • 11.7 percent were aggravated assault.
  • 7.2 percent were comprised of additional crimes against persons, property, and society. (Based on Table 2.)

Offenses by crime category

Of the 7,789 hate crime offenses reported:

  • 61.5 percent were crimes against persons.
  • 38.1 percent were crimes against property.
  • The remainder were crimes against society. (Based on Table 2.) (See Data Collection in Methodology.)

Crimes against persons

Law enforcement reported 4,793 hate crime offenses as crimes against persons. By offense type:

  • 45.0 percent were intimidation.
  • 35.3 percent were simple assault.
  • 19.1 percent were aggravated assault.
  • 0.4 percent were the violent crimes of murder (8 offenses) and forcible rape (9 offenses).
  • 0.3 percent involved the offense category other, which is collected only in the National Incident-Based Reporting System. (Based on Table 2.)

Crimes against property

  • Of the 2,970 hate crime offenses that were crimes against property, 83.0 percent were acts of destruction/damage/vandalism.
  • The remaining 17.0 percent of crimes against property consisted of robbery, burglary, larceny-theft, motor vehicle theft, arson, and other crimes. (Based on Table 2.)

Crimes against society

There were 26 offenses defined as crimes against society (e.g., drug or narcotic offenses or prostitution).

By victim type

When considering the type of victims among property crimes:

  • 48.5 percent were committed against individuals.
  • 11.5 percent were directed at businesses or financial institutions.
  • 9.8 percent were against government.
  • 8.0 percent were aimed at religious organizations.
  • The remaining 22.2 percent were directed at other, multiple, or unknown victim types. (Based on Table 6.)

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Contact the FBI’s Criminal Justice Information Services Division via e-mail at or by telephone at (304) 625-4995.