Hate crimes in Houston up almost 200%, report shows

How does Houston compare to other major U.S. cities?

(Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
(Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

HOUSTON – A study by the Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism at California State University San Bernardino shows hate crimes in Houston were up 191% in 2018.

While that number might seem alarming, it doesn't necessarily tell the whole story. KSAT's sister station in Houston, KPRC, investigated further. 

An evaluation of hate crimes in the 10 largest cities in the United States showed that even at a 191% increase, Houston still had fewer hate crimes than eight of the other nine cities, with only San Antonio having fewer hate crimes.

So how does Houston compare in the grand scheme of things?

Below are hate crimes in the top 10 major cities in the U.S.

City (population)Number of hate crimesRise/decline (%)
New York City (8.62 million)361+7%
Los Angeles (3.99 million)290+13%
Chicago (2.71 million)77+26%
Houston, (2.31 million)32+191%
Phoenix (1.62 million)107-53%
Philadelphia (1.58 million)43+8%
San Antonio (1.51 million)8+50%
San Diego (1.41 million)41No change from prior year
Dallas (1.34 million)35+157%
San Jose, California (1.03 million)36-18%

With 2,009 hate crimes reported across 30 U.S. cities, hate crimes are at a decade high. And it's the fifth consecutive year for an increase, with the steepest rise since 2015.

In the following graph, you can really see how Houston stacks up against the other largest cities.


We see the numbers, but where are they coming from?

According to the report, data showed the most pronounced spikes in hate crimes occurred around domestic catalysts and international conflicts, but the worst months were clustered around highly charged political events — specifically related to terrorism and immigration.

Specifically in Houston, the bias motivation for hate crimes reported were:

  • Anti-race or ethnicity: 15
  • Anti-sexual orientation: 8
  • Anti-religion: 8
  • Anti-gender identity: 1

If you'd like to look more at the numbers and see the context behind the data, check out the full report by the Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism.

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