Hate crime criteria vary widely by state, the analysis of such violations is difficult

National hate-crime statistics are skewed because there is a large inequality of the criteria that state and local governments to use in identifying such violations, according to a report issued on Wednesday.

The analysis, “Five Facts: Hate Crimes, 2010-2015,” by the Seattle based data intelligence company LiveStories found that almost 40,000 hate crimes were reported across the country since the beginning of the decade, but that the geographical distribution of these reported crimes varies greatly. Most of them were in the Northern states such as Michigan, Washington and New York, while the region with the least incidents were in the Deep South.

LifeStories CEO Adnan Mahmud said that the likely reason for the lower reported incidents in the South may be the result of different ways law enforcement agencies to determine or classify hate crimes.

“You might assume that the high level of hate crime should be equal throughout the country,” he said on Fox News. “But there is a huge difference. The question is ‘what are the causes of the difference?'”

Mahmud says that the criteria for deciding whether an offense is classified as a hate crime varies from agency to agency.

“It can be as simple as data-entry,” he said. “The methods may vary from state to state. Enforcement of the law in the northern states, a broader definition of what classifies as a hate crime.”

The report also found that, while the overall number of hate crimes has remained about the same in the six decades of the analysis fall, reported anti-Muslim incidents spiked 67 percent between 2014 and 2015.

The most reported hate crimes reflect the racial and ethnic hostilities, African-Americans are the racial group most often targeted in this type of violation, the LiveStories closed. The other two groups that are most often the object of the reported hate crimes are the members of the LGBT community and Jewish communities.

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LiveStories in comparison with the rates of hate crime to general crime in the country from 2010 to 2014 and found that while there might not be as many reports of hate crimes in the south, the rate of all crime is much higher in the region compared with the rest of the country.


The LiveStories analysis were also compared with the rates of hate crime to overall crime, finding that while there might not be as many reports of hate crimes in the South, the rate of all forms of crime is much higher in that region compared with the rest of the country.

“The difference between the highest and the lowest rates is also significantly higher for hate crime than for non-hate crimes,” the report says. “Between 2010 and 2014, the total crime varies between states by a factor of two.”

The report uses the statistics, and hate crime data from the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Uniform Crime Reports (UCR), which collects data from local law enforcement agencies in the country.

Perry Chiaramonte is a reporter for Follow him on Twitter via @perrych

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