The Justice Department is investigating a recent wave of alleged hate crimes committed in the days since Donald Trump was elected president, Attorney General Loretta Lynch said Friday, calling on the public to continue reporting potential violations of federal law.
Ms. Lynch was commenting on the FBI’s recently published 2015 hate crime statistics in a video statement Friday when she touched on a rash of alleged incidents that have emerged in the week-and-a-half since Mr. Trump was elected the nation’s next president.
“Beyond these 2015 statistics, I know that many Americans are concerned by a spate of recent news reports about alleged hate crimes and harassment. Some of these incidents have happened in schools. Others have targeted houses of worship. And some have singled out individuals for attacks and intimidation,” Ms. Lynch said.
“The FBI is assessing, in conjunction with federal prosecutors, whether particular incidents constitute violations of federal law. We need you to continue to report these incidents to local law enforcement, as well as the Justice Department, so that our career investigators and prosecutors can take action to defend your rights,” she added.
Watchdog groups have said a surge in reported hate crimes has occurred in the aftermath of Mr. Trump being elected president Nov. 8 on the heels of a campaign that called for deporting millions of undocumented immigrants and banning Muslims from entering the country.