FBI launches hate crime campaign

Published 6:30 pm Tuesday, October 5, 2021

The FBI Jackson Field Office has launched a Hate Crimes Awareness Campaign as part of a nationwide effort to encourage reporting to law enforcement.

In September, advertisements on how to report hate crimes were installed on 13 billboards across the state. Thursday, a bus wrapped in the campaign graphics was released on the Gulf Coast and an additional bus will be released mid-October.

Hate crimes are the highest priority of the FBI’s civil rights program because of the devastating impact they have on victims, their families and communities.

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“Hate-motivated crimes against anyone will not be tolerated by the FBI,” said Special Agent in Charge Jermicha Fomby. “The FBI is dedicated to pursuing offenders of these heinous crimes and holding them accountable for their actions. If you are a victim or witness of a hate crime, you are encouraged to report it to local law enforcement and the FBI at 1-800-CALL-FBI.”

Tips can also be submitted online at tips.fbi.gov.

According to the FBI Uniform Crime Report, of the Mississippi law enforcement agencies who submitted data, 64 hate crimes were reported in 2020, a significant increase from the 14 reported in 2019.

The report can be found at https://crime-data-explorer.app.cloud.gov/pages/explorer/crime/hate-crime.

The FBI is the lead investigative agency for criminal violations of federal civil rights statutes, which include hate crimes, defined as a committed criminal offense which is motivated in whole or in part by the offender’s bias against a race, religion, disability, sexual orientation, ethnicity, gender or gender identity.