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The FBI Has Been Tracking Crimes Against Latter-day Saints for 3 Years. Here's Why.

"Across the board, hate crimes against religious minorities are rising," said Brian Levin, director of the Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism at California State University, San Bernardino.

Anti-Semitism and Islamophobia are on the rise, but so are crimes against members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, according to hate crime statistics from the FBI released in December.

The FBI documented 15 "anti-Mormon" hate crimes, or crimes specifically targeting Latter-day Saints, in 2017. That's roughly twice the seven "anti-Mormon" hate crimes recorded in 2016 or the eight in 2015, when the bureau first started tracking bias-motivated offenses against religious minorities including Jehovah's Witnesses, Sikhs, Buddhists, Hindus and Orthodox Christians.

These hate crimes against Latter-day Saints make up only a small fraction of offenses, however.

Lead image by Spenser Heaps, Deseret News
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