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Hate-crime investigations up 60% since Oct. 7, says FBI

Director Christopher Wray points out that the surge is on top of already increasing numbers.

Federal Bureau of Investigation J. Edgar Hoover FBI. building in Washington, D.C. Credit: Gianna Song/Shutterstock.
Federal Bureau of Investigation J. Edgar Hoover FBI. building in Washington, D.C. Credit: Gianna Song/Shutterstock.

Multiple research organizations and police have pointed to an increase in hate crimes since the Hamas terrorist attacks in Israel on Oct.7. Now the country’s top law-enforcement agency has released data of its own.

On Tuesday, FBI director Christopher Wray testified to the Senate Judiciary Committee that “we’ve been opening I think 60% more hate-crimes investigations post-Oct. 7 than compared to the comparable period pre-Oct. 7.”

Wray noted that the uptick was “on top of that already escalating increase”—hate crimes reached a high in 2022. He acknowledged that the “biggest chunk” was driven by antisemitism.

The FBI has also increased efforts to stop terrorism. “Given the steady drumbeat of calls for attacks by foreign terrorist organizations since October 7, we’re working around the clock to identify and disrupt potential attacks by those inspired by Hamas’s horrific terrorist attacks in Israel,” Wray said.

He also advocated for the importance of the FBI’s FISA Section 702 authorities, calling the tool “indispensable” to the organization’s efforts.

“When it comes to foreign adversaries like Iran, whose actions across a whole host of threats have grown more brazen—seeking to assassinate high-level officials, kidnap dissidents and conduct cyberattacks here in the United States … stripping the FBI of its 702 authorities would be a form of unilateral disarmament,” the FBI director said.

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