Showing a slight rise in total numbers over 2002, the number of hate crimes reported in the United States last year reached more than 7,400 incidents, according to a recent FBI report.

More than half of the hate crimes that occurred in the United States in 2003 were racially motivated, and the 2,548 incidents targeted at blacks more than doubled hate crimes against all other racial groups combined.

Although they are not always the most publicized, by a wide margin the most hate crimes based on religion were directed at Jews. The 927 anti-semitic incidents reported in 2003 were about the same as the number reported in 2002.

Of the 11,900 law enforcement agencies from which information was included in the FBI report, only about 16 percent reported any hate crimes in their jurisdictions in 2003.

For more information visit www.fbi.gov.

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