Hate Crimes

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The Davis Police Department takes incidents of hate or bias seriously. All incidents of hate or bias are investigated whether or not a crime has been committed, and officers make every effort to identify the person(s) responsible.

What Is a Hate Incident? hate-crime-20887

A hate incident is non-criminal conduct that is motivated by hatred or bigotry and directed at any individual, residence, house of worship, institution, or business expressly because of the victim's real or perceived race, nationality, religion, sexual orientation, gender, or disability. Hate incidents also include conduct directed against an individual or group because of their association or advocacy on behalf of a member or members of a protected class.

A hate incident might include hate speech, display of offensive materials on one's property, the distribution of hate materials in public places and the posting of hate materials that does not result in property damage. The freedoms guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution, such as freedom of speech, allow hateful rhetoric as long as it does not interfere with the civil rights of others. If this type of behavior escalates to threats or criminal activity against a person or property, then it would be classified as a hate crime.

What Is a Hate Crime?

A hate crime is any criminal act or attempted criminal act directed against a person(s), public agency or private institution based on the victim's actual or perceived race, nationality, religion, sexual orientation, disability, or gender or because the agency or institution is identified or associated with a person or group of an identifiable race, nationality, religion, sexual orientation, disability, or gender. A hate crime includes an act that results in injury, however slight; a verbal threat of violence that can be carried out; an act that results in property damage; and property damage or other criminal act(s) directed against a public or private agency.

Your Rights

  • You have certain rights under the California Constitution's Victims' Bill of Rights. For example, you may be entitled to information about the prosecution of the perpetrator, and you may have the right to present a victim impact statement at the time of sentencing.
  • You may be entitled to restitution for any loss, damage, or injury that you incurred.
  • You are also protected under the Ralph Act and the Bane Act. Under these acts, you could receive up to $25,000 in punitive and compensatory damages in civil court.
  • Persons who commit these types of acts can be held criminally and/or civilly responsible. Civil remedies are available even if criminal violations cannot be proven.

What Laws Apply?

The following is a list of California Penal Code statutes relating to hate crimes:

  • Penal Code Section 190.2(a)(16): Allows the death penalty for murder based on the victim's race, color, religion, nationality, or national origin.
  • Penal Code Section 302: Provides it is a misdemeanor to willfully disturb a group of people meeting to worship.
  • Penal Code Section 422.6(a): Provides it is a misdemeanor to interfere by force or threat of force with a person's statutory or constitutional rights because of that person's race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, sex, disability, or sexual orientation.
  • Penal Code Section 422.7: Provides that actions which are normally misdemeanors can be treated as felonies if committed because of bigotry.
  • Penal Code Section 594.3: Provides it is a felony to knowingly vandalize a place of worship.
  • Penal Code Section 1170.8: Provides additional punishment for robbery or assault of persons, or arson, within a place of worship.
  • Penal Code Section 1170.85(b): Provides additional punishment for felonies committed against the aged or disabled.

Resources

UC Davis Police Department (530) 754-COPS

Yolo County District Attorney's Office (530) 666-8180

Yolo County Victim Services (530) 666-8187

California Attorney General's Office of Victims' Services (877) 433-9069