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Hate Crimes On Decline in California

The number of hate crimes in California fell sharply last year as emotions abated after the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

The state Department of Justice says hate crimes were down 27 percent last year after spiking immediately after the attacks. Crimes involving those of Arab or Middle Eastern descent fell 54 percent. There were 14 anti-Islamic events last year, down from 73 reports in 2001.

Still, race-based hate crimes accounted for two-thirds of all the reports last year.

Attorney General Bill Lockyer calls the drop in all categories of hate crimes “a very promising development” after the sharp increase in hate crimes against people of Middle Eastern or Arab heritage.