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FBI: Hate crimes against Asian Americans higher in 2020 than first reported

FBI: Hate crimes against Asian Americans higher in 2020 than first reported
The FBI said in an update that more than 60% of hate crimes nationwide last year were motivated by race. UPI Photo
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Oct. 25 (UPI) -- Hate crimes against Americans of Asian descent increased in 2020 even more than federal authorities first reported, the FBI said in an update on Monday.

The FBI said the figures it reported in August were incomplete due to an error in statistics from the state of Ohio. At the time, the bureau said crimes against Asian Americans increased 70% last year. Monday's update pushed that figure to 76%.

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The FBI said it corrected the error in the Ohio reporting.

Jay Greenberg, deputy assistant director of the FBI's criminal division, said that the increase occurred mostly during the COVID-19 pandemic.

"Because a hate crime is defined as a violent or property crime with a bias motivation, that crime could be categorized a number of different ways," Greenberg told ABC News.

"We would like the public to reach out to us if they believe that they are a victim of a hate crime. It's not for the public to make that determination; we will work with our state and local partners and help determine how best to investigate that."

The FBI update said more than 60% of hate crimes nationwide were motivated by race.

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The bureau noted that one-fifth of hate crimes in 2020 were motivated by sexual orientation and 13% were attributed to religious bias.

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