Reported hate crimes on the rise in Capital Region.
When Laquan Madison woke up the night of May 14, 2017, to use the bathroom, he saw a terrifying orange glow outside.
Moments later, Madison, his wife and their five children fled their Schodack home.
They watched their garage, which had been defaced by racial epithets and swastikas, burn to the ground.
A 15-year-old boy, who is white, was later arrested in connection to burning the garage of the Madisons, who are black. He was charged with arson, burglary, criminal mischief and seven counts of reckless endangerment.
The incident was one of 16 hate crimes in the Capital Region in 2017, according to the FBI.
The bureau’s hate crime statistics, released earlier this month, show a rise in hate crimes locally as well as nationally.
The FBI defines hate crimes as those motivated by bias based on a person’s race, religion, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity or disability.
Across the United States, there were 7,175 reported hate crimes in 2017 — a 17 percent increase from 2016.
In the Capital Region, the 16 reported hate crimes represent an increase of 30 percent over 2016’s 12 incidents.
Most of 2017’s hate crimes — 12 of them — targeted people based on race, ethnicity or ancestry, based on the sta-
According to the most recent Capital Region Statistical Report by the Capital Region Chamber of Commerce, 84 percent of the region’s population was white in 2014.
About 9 percent of the population was black, 4 percent were Asian, and the remaining were listed as other. (The report did not list the Hispanic population.)
The other four hate crime incidents in the Capital Region targeted
people based on religion.
In New York overall, acts motivated by bias against race and religion were the two most numerous types of hate crimes.
Police agencies in New York reported 552 hate crimes to the FBI, a 7 percent decrease from 2016.
Although the state’s number decreased, New York reported the secondmost hate crimes of 2017 behind California, which reported 1,094.
To view the hate crime statistics for the New York, visit www.ucr.fbi. gov/hate-crime/2017/ tables.