The Arlington Police Department has expanded the department’s hate and bias crime reporting policy to include the reporting of hate incidents. This new policy follows the national best practice of promoting and protecting civil rights in communities by implementing one of the key recommendations from the national publication Action Agenda for Community Organizations and Law Enforcement to Enhance the Response to Hate Crimes. This document was published by the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) and one of the largest civil rights advocacy groups in the United States, the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law. This new reporting policy ensures that hate incidents are captured by reporting processes as well as hate crimes. This is an important shift in policy because there are times when a non-criminal hate incident can cause significant community harm.

Victim advocacy pertaining to these types of crimes and incidents is of paramount concern for the department. The revised policy outlines community required restoration efforts to assist in providing procedural justice to all victims. Investigators prioritize all hate crimes or hate incidents to effectively demonstrate the value of all persons in the community and to enhance community trust.

“Hate-based acts, whether criminal or not, affects those involved and the communities where they reside,” said Police Chief Will Johnson. “The Arlington Police Department takes all hate acts seriously regardless of whether a crime has occurred or not and will safeguard the rights of all individuals.”