Anti-Asian Hate Crimes in Major U.S. Cities Increased 150% in 2020: Report
New York City saw the largest jump in anti-Asian attacks, with 3 instances in 2019 compared to 28 in 2020
The findings of a new study of police department statistics shows that hate crimes against Asian Americans rose by nearly 150% in 2020, despite hate crimes overall dropping by 7%.
The report, issued by the Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism at California State University, San Bernardino, analyzed data on hate crimes in both 2019 and 2020 from authorities in 16 of America's largest cities.
It found the first surge in violence against Asian American came last year, as COVID-19 cases started to spike in March and April.
The findings show that New York City saw the largest increase in anti-Asian hate crimes, rising from 3 reported instances in 2019 to 28 in 2020.
Boston and Los Angeles also saw increases in reported attacks from 2019 to 2020: 6 to 14 in Boston and 7 to 15 in Los Angeles.
The study does not include data from smaller jurisdictions.
Listen below to the episode of PEOPLE Every Day for our conversation with Marita Etcubañez of Asian Americans Advancing Justice about racism and misogyny against the Asian community in the aftermath of the Atlanta shootings.
Investigators have not said the murders allegedly committed by Robert Aaron Long were hate crimes, though the matter of motive is under investigation. According to authorities, Long claimed he was motivated by a "sexual addiction."
Long has since been charged with eight counts of murder and one count of assault. He has yet to enter pleas to the charges, and information on his lawyer was unavailable Thursday.
Want to keep up with the latest crime coverage? Sign up for PEOPLE's free True Crime newsletter for breaking crime news, ongoing trial coverage and details of intriguing unsolved cases.
Recent disturbing attacks on — and racism against — Asian Americans has prompted several celebrities, including Olivia Munn, to come forward, calling for an end to the hate.
According to a recent Harris poll, 75 percent of Asian Americans are fearful of increased hate and discrimination toward them.