State auditors say California underreports hate crimes
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — State auditors say California is underreporting hate crimes to the FBI, state lawmakers and the public because local law enforcement agencies lack adequate policies and training.
The audit released Thursday largely blames the state Department of Justice for not requiring that local agencies do a better job.
Attorney General Xavier Becerra immediately announced a new hate crimes prevention website and brochure and more guidance for local agencies. He is running for election in next week’s primary.
Auditors found problems with hate crime policies at four agencies they reviewed, including the Los Angeles Police Department and the Orange County Sheriff’s Department. The agencies underreported hate crimes by about 14 percent.
Nearly a third of law enforcement agencies do nothing to encourage the public to report hate crimes.