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Colorado Hate Crimes Remain Steady

The number of hate crimes committed in Colorado held relatively steady last year, but groups working to prevent these crimes remain concerned.

Police responded to 106 hate crimes around the state last year. More than half of them were racially motivated. The number was flat compared to 2016, but some residents are concerned because the state hasn’t seen the number of hate crimes drop over the last three years. The Colorado Anti -Defamation League’s Jeremy Shaver says hateful messages continue to spread: "We’ve seen banners with a white supremacist message being hung over I-25 near Colorado Springs. A group gathering in Civic Center Park in Denver just this last weekend holding a banner that had an anti immigrant message." Nationally, hate crimes were up 17 percent last year. A big portion of them was attributed to a rise in anti-Semitic attacks.

Scott Franz is a government watchdog reporter and photographer from Steamboat Springs. He spent the last seven years covering politics and government for the Steamboat Pilot & Today, a daily newspaper in northwest Colorado. His reporting in Steamboat stopped a police station from being built in a city park, saved a historic barn from being destroyed and helped a small town pastor quickly find a kidney donor. His favorite workday in Steamboat was Tuesday, when he could spend many of his mornings skiing untracked powder and his evenings covering city council meetings. Scott received his journalism degree from the University of Colorado at Boulder. He is an outdoorsman who spends at least 20 nights a year in a tent. He spoke his first word, 'outside', as a toddler in Edmonds, Washington. Scott visits the Great Sand Dunes, his favorite Colorado backpacking destination, twice a year. Scott's reporting is part of Capitol Coverage, a collaborative public policy reporting project, providing news and analysis to communities across Colorado for more than a decade. Fifteen public radio stations participate in Capitol Coverage from throughout Colorado.
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