Policing Hate Crimes: Expanding Definitions of the Violence of Hate

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Public Programs of the National Law Enforcement Museum

Policing Hate Crimes: Expanding Definitions of the Violence of Hate

When the “Matthew Shepard and James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act” was signed into law by President Barack Obama in 2009, it expanded the definition of a hate crime in the United States to include crimes committed because of the actual or perceived race, color, religion, national origin of any person or the actual or perceived religion, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, or disability of any person. The act both expanded the definition of a hate crime and provides funding and technical assistance to state, local, and tribal jurisdictions to help them to more effectively investigate and prosecute hate crimes.

This program features a discussion of how this law has changed the way hate crimes are investigated and prosecuted in the United States and some of the training organizations like the Matthew Shepard Foundation are helping to provide for Law Enforcement Agencies to better prevent and police hate crimes in their own jurisdictions.



Opening Remarks

Bill Alexander, Chief Executive Officer, NLEOMF


Greg Miraglia, Retired Deputy Police Chief, Napa Valley Railroad Police Department and current founder and president of Out to Protect Inc.


  • Dr. Brendan Lantz, Director, Hate Crimes Research and Policy Institute, Florida State University
  • Judy Shepard, Board President, Matthew Shepard Foundation
  • Dennis Shepard, Board Member Emeritus, Matthew Shepard Foundation
  • Cynthia M. Dietle, Director, Associate Counsel, Meta; Co-Chair Hate Crimes Subcommittee, IACP
  • Becky L. Monroe, Deputy Director of Strategic Initiatives for California’s Civil Rights Department; Co-Chair Hate Crimes Subcommittee, IACP
  • Sergeant Jamie Hyun, Special Investigations Division, San Francisco Police Department