Hate Crimes

A hate crime is a criminal offense that is motivated in whole or part by hatred, bias, or prejudice against a protected class. A hate crime may be committed against individuals or groups of people who are members of a protected population. Its effects, however, are not limited to victims and other members of their groups but are also felt on micro and macro levels by communities.

For this Major Assessment, you will examine four real-life hate crime cases in order to determine what characteristics make each a hate crime. You will also examine the effects of each hate crime, potential community responses, and how criminal justice organizations can address the impact of hate crimes.

The Assignment

Define hate crimes, generally. (1 paragraph)

For each of the four hate crimes below, describe the specific factors in each case that made it a hate crime. (1–2 paragraphs each)

Matthew Shepard

Charleston church shooting

Private Barry Winchell

Yusor Mohammad Abu-Salha, Deah Shaddy Barakat, and Razan Mohammad Abu-Salha

Choose one of the four cases, and imagine it occurred in your community. Describe the impact this hate crime might have had on your community. In your response, consider other members of the protected class as well as the community as a whole. Then explain how the community should respond (e.g., with gatherings, town halls, educational programming, volunteer work) and why. (3–4 paragraphs)

Still imagining the crime occurred in your community, how should the criminal justice organizations in your community address its impact? For instance, you may consider community partnerships, additional training for officers, or additional resources for these types of crimes (e.g., a task force). (2–4 paragraphs)

Identify three specific action items that could be planned or done to prevent further hate crimes. (1–2 paragraphs)

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