In Illinois, small agencies struggle to report hate crimes

In Illinois, small agencies struggle to report hate crimes

Between 2009 and 2014, more than a fifth of law enforcement agencies in Illinois did not report to the FBI on whether any hate crimes were committed in their communities.

That happened in spite of a push by FBI Director James Comey to aggressively track hate crimes.

The findings in Illinois are part of a national analysis of FBI Uniform Crime Report data by The Associated Press that discovered about 17 percent of all local law enforcement agencies nationwide have not submitted hate crime reports over the most recently available six-year period.

Most of the agencies missing reports are small. Officials at some like the Creve Coeur Police Department near Peoria say they do the reports when they can, but have only a handful of staff members.

The Winnebago County Sheriff’s Office was not aware it lacked reports until called by the AP. Officials there say they will correct the problem.