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Only a fraction of bias crimes ever get reported, the non-profit news organization reported. Fewer still get successfully prosecuted. Perhaps the widespread lack of training for frontline officers has something to do with that. Brian Levin, a former New York City police officer, CSUSB professor of criminal justice and director of the Center for the Study or Hate and Extremism, advocates for more training -- certainly more than a hour class than one law enforcement instructor said was adequate.
“We should always train law enforcement to tag it as a possible hate crime at the time of report, as long the evidence is there,” said Levin. “We need accurate data, so communities can be aware of the extent of the problem and the characteristics of the offenses.”
Further in the article, ProPublica reported that for more than a decade, the Federal Law Enforcement Training Centers ran a program called “Train-the-Trainer” that routinely sent hate crimes specialists around the country to work with state and local cops. The idea was to educate police trainers and command staff about hate crimes so they could return to their departments and teach new recruits and frontline officers.
“It was a great program,” recalled Levin, who was one of the instructors. “I did stuff on everything from the hate groups to legal issues such as Supreme Court cases.” Levin said he volunteered his time out of a sense of mission and worked alongside experts from the Southern Poverty Law Center and the ADL, as well as law enforcement figures.
Read the complete article at “Hate crime training for police is often inadequate, sometimes nonexistent.”