Bias Motivated Incidents, 2005-2009

More incidents were reported from 2005-2009 than from any other five-year time period, but the incidents were generally less violent than in previous years. This is the first five-year time period in which harassment was not the most common type of incident. The most common types of incidents from 2005-2009 were graffiti (37) and harassment (29). In one graffiti incident that took place in 2007, vandals spray painted obscenities and racial slurs on the exterior of Boone Grove High School. In 2008, nearly 40 homes in Crown Point were vandalized with swastika graffiti and racial slurs. In another incident, a mosque was severely vandalized. Holes were shot in the building’s copper dome, and two glass doors, 10 windows, a sign, and a spotlight were vandalized. The letters “KKK” were scratched into the sign. The damage cost $8,600. There were also 8 incidents of property damage, the most of any five-year period. However, the number of violent assaults reached a record low, at only 2, and there were no murders during this period. There was also only one cross burning, another record low.

During this period, Porter County surpassed Lake County in the number of incidents, a trend that has continued until the present. Almost twice as many incidents occurred in Porter County than Lake County with 56 incidents (55.4%) in Porter and 33 incidents (32.7%) in Lake. As seen in the map, a large number of incidents occurred in the Valparaiso area. Most of these 22 incidents were harassment, graffiti, and swastika graffiti.