Weeks after Robert Bowers barged into a Pittsburgh synagogue killing 11 men and women, the FBI released it 2017 hate crime report detailing a 17 percent increase since 2016.
In 2016, there were 7,509 victims and 5,727 known offenders compared to last year’s 8,493 victims and 6,307 known offenders. Acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker released a statement about the results and said the noticeable increase would be addressed by law enforcement.
“This report is a call to action — and we will heed that call,” Whitaker said. “The Department of Justice’s top priority is to reduce violent crime in America, and hate crimes are violent crimes.”
According to the report, close to 60 percent of the hate crimes committed in 2017 were “were motivated by a race/ethnicity/ancestry bias.” While nearly 22.0 percent were prompted by religious bias, 15.9 percent resulted from sexual-orientation bias and 1.7 percent were motivated by gender-identity bias.”
Whitaker said the anti-Semitic uptick perplexed him the most.
“I am particularly troubled by the increase in anti-Semitic hate crimes — which were already the most common religious hate crimes in the United States — that is well documented in this report,” Whitaker said.
On. Oct. 24, Gregory Bush, 51 killed two African-American shoppers at a Kroger grocery store in Jeffersontown, KY, which was just two days before Bowers killed worshipers at the Tree of Life – Or L’Simcha Congregation.
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