The FBI’s annual release of hate crime statistics showed a small decrease in 2018 though the release indicates that reporting isn’t comprehensive. For one thing, participation of local and state agencies isn’t mandatory.

The FBI discourages state-by-state comparisons from these rankings. But: The report indicates that nine agencies in Arkansas reported 14 hate crimes, ranging from assault to theft, in 2018. That was up from eight the year before.

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Gov. Asa Hutchinson has favored a hate crime law with harsher penalties for crimes motivated by hate. It’s one of only five states without such a law.

Categories covered by the hate crime reporting or biases based on race, ethnicity, ancestry, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity and disability.

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