LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) - A report from the Los Angeles County Commission on Human Relations (LACCHD) has found that Anti-Asian hate crimes in Los Angeles County increased by 76% in 2020. The jump is the largest reported amount of hate crimes since 2001.
The LACCHD compiled these numbers from the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department, over 40 different city police departments and police agencies at schools, universities and colleges. LACCHD is aware that the number of reports on hate crimes is likely drastically underreported.
This is only part of the entire report, which is scheduled to be released sometime in November. This special release was indicated to highlight the numbers surrounding the Asian community.
Among the numbers included in the report are findings that most of the crimes committed were anti-Chinese, while anti-Japanese, anti-Asian Indian, anti-Korean, anti-Taiwanese, anti-Vietnamese and anti-Guatemalan crimes were also reported. 23% of those crimes explicitly blamed the victim for COVID-19.
The rate of which these crimes were violent was 77%, up from 58% in 2018 and 76% in 2019.
On the topic, Commission President Guadalupe Montano had this to say: "It did not help that the former president repeatedly referred to COVID-19 as 'China virus' and 'kung-flu.'"
Of the cases were the suspect was identified or the race of the suspect was known, 42% of the individuals were white, 36% were Latino and 19% were African American.
Executive Director of the LACCHD, Robin Toma, found this bit of information especially surprising:
"Contrary to impressions which might be drawn from videos in social media posts and news coverage, which are of only a fraction of the actual hate crimes, our report indicates that the racial makeup of suspects committing anti- Asian hate crimes is much more racially diverse."
While the full scope of the report remains to be seen, it is already clear to local figures that something needs to be done to curb the rising numbers. Hilda Solis, Board of Supervisors Chair said of Wednesday's report, "shows that we have much more work to do."
Supervisor Kathryn Barger added, "This is an important reminder for all residents to stand up and speak out when they witness a hate crime."
Anyone who experiences or witnesses an act of hate or hate crime is encouraged to call 211 or go to www.LAvsHate.org to receive assistance.
The LACCHD has collected hate-crime data for their annual Hate Crime Report since 1980.
(© Copyright 2021 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. City News Service contributed to this report.)
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