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Asian hate crimes: Which states don’t have laws against it?

THE series of shocking shooting at massage parlors in Atlanta this week has rocked the world and caused mass concern amongst the Asian community.

Although the suspect maintains the murders were not racially motivated, it has sparked an international and nationwide debate on the protection of the Asian community from hate crimes.

Which states don’t have laws against Asian hate crimes?

In the US, some states do not have any hate crime laws.

Arkansas, South Carolina, and Wyoming do not have any hate crime laws and do not require data collection on the matter.

As well as this, American Samoa, Guam, and the U.S Virgin Islands do not have any hate crime laws, according to the Department of Justice.

Some states have hate crime laws, but do not require data collection.

It is thought the recent shootings in Atlanta and the sharp rise in hate crimes against the Asian community could be the catalyst for new tougher legislation to be implemented.

What is the law against Asian hate crime in Georgia?

Georgia only brought in legislation protecting specific groups from hate crimes last year after the murder of Ahmaud Arbery.

The 25-year-old Black man was out jogging when he was fatally shot and killed by armed white men.

The hate crimes bill was signed into law by Governor Brian Kemp on June 26, 2020.

The law was adapted to extend additional sentencing guidelines on those who commit a crime based on a victim's race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender, or disability.

Under the new legislation, criminals can face a further 6-12 months in prison and a fine of up to $5,00 for one of five misdemeanours, while felony crimes carry an extra two year jail term.

The law also mandated the collection of data on hate crimes, requiring officers to submit a 'Bias Crime Report'.

What has Joe Biden said about Asian hate crimes?

President Joe Biden condemned the influx in Asian hate crimes in the wake of the horrific spa shootings in Atlanta that left six Asian women dead.

"I’ve been speaking about the brutality against Asian Americans for the last couple months," he said, referring to his administration's work within the community.

The President had previously denounced the "vicious hate crimes against Asian Americans, who have been attacked, harassed, blamed and scapegoated," for 'causing' the coronavirus pandemic, earlier this year.

"It's wrong. It's un-American. And it must stop."

After the shocking shootings, he said: "Whatever the motivation here, I know Asian Americans, they are very concerned, because as you know I have been speaking about the brutality against Asian Americans, and it's troubling."

The 78-year-old is set to meet with Asian American leaders with Vice President Kamala Harris as they head to Atlanta on Friday.

The Democrats will sit down with Georgia state legislators and Asian American and Pacific Islander patrons to hear their perspectives and suggestions regarding the dramatic surge in hate crimes against the community.

What happened in Atlanta?

Robert Aaron Long, 21, of Woodstock, Georgia has been arrested and charged with the murder of eight people after a series of shooting at massage parlors in Atlanta.

On March 16, six women of Asian descent, one white woman, and one white man were shot dead.

The ruthless rampage began at a Cherokee County massage parlour, Youngs Asian Massage, around 30 miles northwest of Atlanta.

Two Asian females were shot dead, and a white woman and man who were also shot later died from their injuries.

Three Asian women were then gunned down at Gold Spa, before another Asian woman was shot dead at the Aromatherapy Spa, just across the road.

Atlanta Police Chief Rodney N. Bryant explained that: "While at (the first spa) we received another call across the street of shots fired, and responded to find another individual shot at that location."

The shocking murder spree sparked outrage across the world, as the suspect seemingly appeared to be specifically targeting Asian women.

Long has since told cops that the massage parlors, which he had previously frequented, were a "temptation that he wanted to eliminate".

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