Police Response to Hate Crimes
PDF (Srpski)


hate crimes
police response
victims zločin iz mržnje
odgovor policije

How to Cite

Kesić, T. ., Bjelovuk, I. ., & Žarković, M. . (2017). Police Response to Hate Crimes. Kriminalističke Teme, (5), 320-335. Retrieved from https://krimteme.fkn.unsa.ba/index.php/kt/article/view/161


Reason for writing and research problem(s): Hate crime is criminological term which means crime that is committed as a consequence of intolerance toward “different”. These are crimes which are committed because of hate, bigotry or prejudice toward certain group or community and therefore present serious security threat not only for individuals who are directly exposed to this kind of crime, but for social community, since they could lead to large-scale conflict. Hate crime could be any crime, such as: endangerment of safety, damage of another’s object, serious and light bodily harm, murder and other crimes according to the Criminal Code, when the offender deliberately targets the victim because of existence of so called protected characteristic. Protected characteristic is certain fact which is common for one group, such as race, religion and ethnicity or sexual orientation, disability or other common factors. Bearing in mind thus defined characteristics of hate crimes, attention should be focused to their recognition, proper identification and treatment of competent authorities, especially police. Police response should be adjusted to the nature of these crimes and sensitive to its victims. Specifics of the hate crime, serious psychological consequences for the victim and high dark figure of crime, opted us for this topic.

Aims of the paper (scientific and/or social): The aim of this article is to highlight the presence of hate crimes and police conduct in this cases and to define the best practice in police response toward hate crime.

Methodology/ Design: In order to achieve the aim we`ll analyze the concept of hate crime in Serbian and comparative legislation and rules of police conduct in states that have adopted special police hate crime operational guidances. Nonetheless, we`ll present examples of practical actions of Serbian and other police in identifying hate crimes and treatment of victims, that can be considered as particularly vulnerable victims and the most interesting court decisions.

Research/ Paper limitation: Since one of goals of this article is highlighting the presence of hate crimes in the Republic of Serbia, determination of this fact requires analyze of court practice. Unfortunately, despite hate crime is regulated as mandatory aggravating circumstance (Art. 54a CCS), according to the report of NGO, no court in the Republic of Serbia has delivered a verdict which refers to this article. Also, there are no official records of hate crimes, which significantly limits research and directs authors to presentation of media covered cases.

Results/ Findings: The most significant results of this article are: to point out representation of hate crimes and its most common forms, presentation and analyze of police conduct and defining the best practice in police response to hate crimes.

General Conclusion: Successful police response to hate crime and adequate treatment of victims could be achieved by defining the best practice in police conduct and systematic and comprehensive monitoring and recording of hate crimes.

Research/ Paper Validity: Hate crimes present serious security threat not only for individuals who are directly exposed to this kind of crime, but for social community in whole, that`s why is necessary to take measures toward prevention and fight against such behavior. Also, it is nesessary to raise awareness about the importance of opposition and adequate reaction to hate crime and sensitive treatment of its victims.

PDF (Srpski)
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