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Hate Crimes: State Statutes and Contacts: Iowa - Maine

General Information

This guide is meant to summarize state statutes relating to hate crimes.  In addition to the state statutes listed, there are relevant federal statutes:

  •  Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994, H.R. 3355, Pub.L. 103–322, Sec. 280003 108 Stat. 1796, 2096 provides for enhanced sentencing for hate crimes, defined as "a crime in which the defendant intentionally selects a victim, or in the case of a property crime, the property that is the object of the crime, because of the actual or perceived race, color, religion, national origin, ethnicity, gender, disability, or sexual orientation of any person." 
  •  Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act (HCPA), 18 USC § 249
  • For more on federal statutes, see Congressional Research Service Report R47060, Overview of Federal Hate Crime Laws    

The Southern Poverty Law Center has a reporting form for hate incidents.

The National Asian Pacific American Bar Association has resources including a reporting form for hate incidents and hate crimes toolkits in 25 languages.

Alison M. Smith and Cassandra L. Foley, State Statutes Governing Hate Crimes, Congressional Research Service Report RL33099 (Sept. 28, 2010) served as an invaluable resource for this guide.  

For UCLA Law users, Westlaw has a treatise on Hate Crimes Law by Zachary J. Wolfe  (login and password required).

State specific information from the federal Department of Justice (hate crimes home page).

The Movement Advancement Project maintains a list of which state hate crimes statutes include sexual orientation and gender identity.

Iowa

Hate crimes laws:

  • Iowa Code § 80B.11: Requires training for law enforcement officers about hate crimes
  • Iowa Code § 692.15: Requires state police to collect data on hate crimes
  • Iowa Code § 708.2C: An "assault in violation of individual rights" is an assault that is a hate crime under Section 729A.2 (see below)
  • Iowa Code § 712.9: Hate crime penalty
  • Iowa Code § 716.6A: enhanced penalties for criminal mischief which is also a hate crime
  • Iowa Code § 729A.1: "Persons within the state of Iowa have the right to be free from any violence, or intimidation by threat of violence, committed against their persons or property because of their race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, political affiliation, sex, sexual orientation, age, or disability."
  • Iowa Code § 729A.2: Hate crime defined, includes the following when motivated by "the person's race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, political affiliation, sex, sexual orientation, age, or disability, or the person's association with a person of a certain race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, political affiliation, sex, sexual orientation, age, or disability": Assault under 708.C, violation of individual rights under 712.9, criminal mischeif under 716.6A, or trespass in violation of individual rights under 716.8(3) and (4)
  • Iowa Code § 729A.4: Requires training for law enforcement officers about violations of individual rights
  • Iowa Code § 729.5: crime of violating or conspiring to violate civil rights

Where to report hate crimes, in addition to local police:
FBI Field Office
FBI Omaha (Serves Iowa)
4411 South 121st Court
Omaha, NE 68137-2112
Phone: (402) 493-8688

State Attorney General’s Office
Office of the Attorney General
1305 E. Walnut Street
Des Moines IA 50319
Phone: 515-281-5164

 

Kansas

Hate Crimes Laws:

  • Kan Stat Ann. 21-6815(c)(2)(C): It is an aggravating factor in criminal sentencing if "[t]he offense was motivated entirely or in part by the race, color, religion, ethnicity, national origin or sexual orientation of the victim or the offense was motivated by the defendant's belief or perception, entirely or in part, of the race, color, religion, ethnicity, national origin or sexual orientation of the victim whether or not the defendant's belief or perception was correct."

Where to report hate crimes, in addition to local police:
FBI Field Office
FBI Kansas City (Serves Kansas)
1300 Summit Street
Kansas City, MO 64105
Phone: (816) 512-8200

State Attorney General’s Office + Other State Resources
Office of the Attorney General
120 SW 10th Ave., 2nd Floor
Topeka, KS 66612
Phone: (785) 296-2215
Phone (Toll-Free): 1-888-428-8436
 

Kentucky

Hate crimes laws:

  • Ky. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 17.1523: Requires collection of data on hate crimes
  • Ky. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 525.110: misdemeanor to desecrate venerated objects, including places of worship.
  • Ky. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 525.113: felony to desecrate venerated objects when motivated by "race, color, religion, sexual orientation, or national origin of another individual or group of individuals"
  • Ky. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 532.031: when a defendant is "found by the sentencing judge to have committed an offense specified below as a result of a hate crime if the person intentionally because of race, color, religion, sexual orientation, or national origin of another individual or group of individuals" this may be taken into account in sentencing and parole decisions

Where to report hate crimes, in addition to local police:
FBI Field Office
FBI Louisville
12401 Sycamore Station Place
Louisville, KY 40299-6198
Phone: (502) 263-6000

State Attorney General’s Office
Office of the Attorney General
700 Capitol Avenue, Suite 118
Frankfort, Kentucky 40601-3449
Main Switchboard: (502) 696-5300

Louisville Branch Office
Office of the Attorney General
310 Whittington Parkway, Suite 101
Louisville, KY 40222
Phone: (502) 429-7134

Prestonsburg Field Office
Office of the Attorney General
361 N. Lake Drive
Prestonsburg, KY 41653
Phone: (606) 889-1821

Louisiana

Hate crimes laws:

  • La. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 14:107.2: unlawful to "select the victim of [certain] offenses against person and property because of actual or perceived race, age, gender, religion, color, creed, disability, sexual orientation, national origin, or ancestry of that person or the owner or occupant of that property or because of actual or perceived membership or service in, or employment with, an organization, or because of actual or perceived employment as a law enforcement officer, firefighter, or emergency medical services personnel"
  • La. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 14:225: crime of instiutional vandalism, including damage to places of worship
  • La. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 15:1204.4: Requires collection of data on hate crimes
  • La. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 40:2403 H.(1): There may be training for law enforcement officers about hate crimes

Where to report hate crimes, in addition to local police:
FBI Field Office
FBI New Orleans
2901 Leon C. Simon Boulevard
New Orleans, LA 70126
Phone: (504) 816-3000

State Attorney General’s Office
Office of the Attorney General
Constituent Services
1885 N. Third Street
Baton Rouge, LA 70802

Phone: (225) 326-6079
 

Maine

Hate crimes laws:

  • 5 Me. Rev. Stat. § 4684-A: "a person has the right to engage in lawful activities without being subject to physical force or violence, damage or destruction of property, trespass on property or the threat of physical force or violence, damage or destruction of property or trespass on property motivated by reason of race, color, religion, sex, ancestry, national origin, physical or mental disability or sexual orientation."
  • 17-A Me. Rev. Stat. § 507: crime to desecrate certain places, including places of worship
  • 17-A Me. Rev. Stat. § 1151: "selection by the defendant of the person against whom the crime was committed or of the property that was damaged or otherwise affected by the crime because of the race, color, religion, sex, ancestry, national origin, physical or mental disability, sexual orientation or homelessness of that person or of the owner or occupant of that property" may be a factor in sentencing
  • 17 Me. Rev. Stat. §§ 2931, 2932: crime of intentionally interfering with civil rights
  • 25 Me. Rev. Stat. § 1544: Requires collection of data on hate crimes
  • 25 Me. Rev. Stat. § 2803-B: Requires law enforcement agencies to develop policies on hate crimes

Where to report hate crimes, in addition to local police:
FBI Field Office
FBI Boston (Serves Maine)
One Center Plaza, Suite 600
Boston, MA 02108
Phone: (617) 742-5533

State Attorney General’s Office
Office of the Attorney General
6 State House Station
Augusta, ME 04333
Phone: 207-626-8800
Phone (TTY): 207-626-8865