Federal Bureau of Investigation data shows hate crimes appeared to drop in Wisconsin

Stock image depicting a crime scene with evidence markers

The number of hate crimes rose almost 5 percent across the country in 2016, according to new data released by the Federal Bureau of Investigation on Monday.

The data released Monday by the federal law enforcement agency show there were 684 anti-Semitic hate crime incidents previous year, a 3 percent increase from the 664 recorded by the FBI in 2015.

The 2016 tallies mark an uptick from 2015, when 15 hate crimes were reported statewide.

"There's a unsafe disconnect between the rising problem of hate crimes and the lack of credible data being reported", said ADL CEO Jonathan A. Greenblatt. Hate crime victims can be individuals, businesses, government entities, religious organizations, or society as whole, and they can be committed against persons, property, or society. The month before, windows were smashed at Temple Israel in Alameda. The agency collects its data from participating law enforcement officials through the Uniform Crime Reporting Program.

Furthermore, hate crimes are generally underreported to police.

The number of hate crimes in 2016 was 6,121 - about a 5% jump from 2015.

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"It's deeply disturbing to see hate crimes increase for the second year in a row", said Jonathan A. Greenblatt, chief executive of the Anti-Defamation League.

The latest statistics are based on voluntary reporting from almost 16,000 USA law enforcement agencies.

The latest overall figure included sharper spikes in hate crimes targeting several minority groups. And the number of anti-Muslim groups almost tripled, to 101 past year, from 34 in 2015, the SPLC said.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions has said it would be a top focus of his Justice Department.

Mr Sessions added that he would await a Department of Justice Crime Reduction and Public Safety task force report to determine what actions should be taken to address the increase.

Amid a wave of bomb threats against Jewish centers in March, the SPLC said the heated campaign had fueled an increase in the "use of slurs and other derogatory language" across the U.S. The majority of victims were targeted due to their race or ethnicity, the report says, with crimes against African-Americans by far the largest share in that category.

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