Printer Friendly


The FBI collects hate crime data regarding criminal offenses that are motivated, in whole or in part, by the offender's bias against a race, religion, sexual orientation, ethnicity/national origin, or disability, and committed against persons, property, or society. Because motivation is subjective, it is difficult to know with certainty whether a crime was the result of the offender's bias, which alone does not mean that a hate crime was invariably involved. Law enforcement investigation is crucial because it must reveal sufficient evidence to lead a reasonable and prudent person to conclude that the offender's actions were motivated, in whole or in part, by his or her bias. Only then can law enforcement report an incident as a hate crime.

Data Collection

The law enforcement agencies that participate in the national hate crime program collect details about an offender's bias motivation associated with the following 11 offense types already being reported to the UCR Program: murder and nonnegligent manslaughter, forcible rape, aggravated assault, simple assault, intimidation (crimes against persons); and robbery, burglary, larceny-theft, motor vehicle theft, arson, and destruction/damage/vandalism (crimes against property). The law enforcement agencies that participate in the UCR Program via the NIBRS collect additional offenses for crimes against persons and crimes against property, which the UCR Program publishes in Hate Crime Statistics as "Other." These agencies also collect hate crime data for another category called crimes against society, which includes drug or narcotic offenses, gambling offenses, and prostitution offenses. Together, the offense classification other and the crime category crimes against society include 35 Group "A" Offenses (not listed) that are captured in the NIBRS, which also collects the previously mentioned 11 offense categories. (The Uniform Crime Reporting Handbook, NIBRS edition [1992], provides an explanation of all 46 Group "A" Offenses.)

The UCR Program data collection guidelines stipulate that a hate crime may involve multiple offenses, victims, and offenders within one incident; therefore, the hate crime data collection program is incident-based. In submitting data to the national UCR Program, law enforcement counts one offense for each victim of crimes against persons. When submitting crimes against property, however, law enforcement counts one offense for each distinct incident, regardless of the number of victims. Likewise, law enforcement agencies submitting data through NIBRS count one offense for each distinct incident (not victim) of crimes against society.

The national UCR Program uses the minimally accepted designations for race and ethnicity as established by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and published in the Federal Register. The revised standards have five minimum categories for data on race and two categories for data on ethnicity. In complying with the published standards, the FBI uses the following racial designations in its hate crime data collection program: White, Black, American Indian or Alaskan Native, Asian or Pacific Islander, and Multiple Races, Group. The ethnic designations are Hispanic and Other Ethnicity/National Origin.

Data Reporting

Law enforcement agencies may capture hate crime data in one of three ways: via NIBRS submissions, in an electronic hate crime record layout, or on the Hate Crime Incident Report and the Quarterly Hate Crime Report forms. The media on which the state UCR Programs may forward hate crime data to the national Program include magnetic cartridges, disks, or electronic record layouts sent via E-mail; and traditional paper forms. Most agencies reporting data electronically to the national UCR Program via the NIBRS use a data element within their reporting software that indicates the incident involved a bias motivation. Because the data element applies to all 46 of the Group "A" Offenses, it enables agencies to indicate whether any of the 35 additional offenses were bias motivated. Furthermore, these agencies can report considerably more information about the hate crime incident since the NIBRS is an incident-based, comprehensive data collection system. Though the additional data are not maintained in the hate crime database, they are available in the NIBRS master files.

Law enforcement agencies that prefer electronic submissions but do not report via NIBRS may use the hate crime record layout specified in the publication Hate Crime Magnetic Media Specifications for Tapes & Diskettes (January 1997). As long as they have the national Program's approval, agencies may use any of the previously mentioned electronic media to submit the data.

Agencies that choose the Hate Crime Incident Report and the Quarterly Hate Crime Report forms supply the national UCR Program with information about each hate crime incident including the offense type and its respective bias motivation, the number and type of victims, the location of the incident, the number of known offenders, and the known offender's race. During a calendar quarter, law enforcement agencies submit a Hate Crime Incident Report for each bias-motivated incident. At the end of each calendar quarter, reporting agencies submit a Quarterly Hate Crime Report, on which agencies include the total number of incidents reported for the quarter and delete any previously reported incidents that were through subsequent investigation determined not to be bias-motivated. If no hate crime incidents occurred in their jurisdiction that quarter, the agency must still submit the Quarterly Hate Crime Report to report zero hate crime incidents.


When examining the data contained in this report, data users should be aware that the first line following each table number presents in boldface type that table's unit of count, i.e., incident, offense, victim, or known offender.

To be included in this publication, law enforcement agencies must have submitted hate crime data for at least 1 month of the calendar year. The published data, therefore, do not necessarily represent reports from each participating agency for 12 months or 4 quarters. Section II of this publication furnishes individual state and agency information, including the number of quarters for which the agency reported data to the national Program.

Based on the revised standards from the Office of Management and Budget for defining Metropolitan Statistical Areas, the UCR Program now refers to suburban counties as metropolitan counties and rural counties as nonmetropolitan counties. (Section I, Summary of the UCR Program, of Crime in the United States, 2003, provides more information about the creation of new statistical compilation areas in the Recent Developments section.)

Valid assessments about crime, including hate crime, are possible only with careful study and analysis of the various unique conditions affecting each local law enforcement jurisdiction. (The article "Crime Factors" in the beginning of each edition of Crime in the United States [accessible at the FBI's Internet site at] presents a comprehensive discussion of the many factors that affect crime in a jurisdiction.) Therefore the reader is cautioned against simplistic comparisons of the statistical data of this program with that of others with differing methodologies or even comparing individual reporting units solely on

the basis of their agency type.
COPYRIGHT 2003 Federal Bureau of Investigation
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2003, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Title Annotation:FBI's Uniform Crime Reports
Publication:Uniform Crime Reports: Hate Crime Statistics
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Jan 1, 2003
Previous Article:Introduction.
Next Article:Section I--Hate Crime Statistics, 2003.

Related Articles
Section II--jurisdictional hate crime statistics, 2004.
Summary of the Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program.
Summary of the Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program.
Appendix IV--the nation's two crime measures.

Terms of use | Copyright © 2017 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters