California Hate Crimes Hit Highest Level in Over a Decade

Hate crime events in the state of California increased 31% from 2019 to 2020, while hate crime offenses like murder, rape, or arson rose 23.9%. That’s according to the 2020 Annual Hate Crime in California report released June 30.

Hate crimes against Asian Americans more than doubled from 2019 to 2020, with San Luis Obispo County experiencing the highest rate of AAPI attacks. But the majority of attacks were against Black people. Crimes against the African American community shot up 87%.

Latinos and whites also experienced a rise in racially-motivated discrimination. Anti-Latino crimes rose 38% and hate crimes against whites more than doubled from 39 to 82.

“For too many, 2020 wasn’t just about a deadly virus. It was about an epidemic of hate,” Attorney General Rob Bonta said. His office has published a new informational bulletin for law enforcement and guidance for prosecutors to aid with the reporting and prosecution of crimes motivated by hate.

Overall, hate crimes in California are at their highest levels since 2008. While racially-motivated attacks have increased, attacks motivated by religion and sexual orientation declined. Anti-Jewish crimes are down 18%.