UNC Police: General Order 08-08R1 - Hate Crime Reporting


UNC Police: General Order 08-08R1 - Hate Crime Reporting

Document Information

Document Information Table
Subject Hate Crime Reporting
Date August 24, 2020
Number 08-08R1
Amends July 9, 1999
Supersedes 08-08
Approved by Brian L. James, Chief of Police
CALEA Standards 55.1.1 Victim/Witness Assistance, 55.2.3 Assistance/Preliminary Investigation & 55.2.4 Assistance, Follow-up Investigation
CALEA Communications Standard 6.2.4 Obtaining and Recording Information


The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Department of Police Department (UNC-CH Police Department) aspires to take an active role in promoting peace and harmony within the UNC-CH community and in addressing all acts of hatred and violence within the UNC-CH Police Department jurisdiction. The UNC-CH Police Department will use every necessary resource to ensure that rights guaranteed by state laws and the United States (U.S.). Constitution are protected for members of the UNC-CH community regardless of their race, color, ethnicity, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, or religion.


It is the policy of the UNC-CH Police Department to bring the investigative and enforcement elements of the UNC-CH Police Department into quick action, following any reported or observed incidents of hate incidents or crimes. There is a special emphasis placed on victim assistance and UNC-CH community cooperation in order to reduce trauma or fear for the victim and UNC-CH community. Each officer must conduct a thorough, prompt, and complete investigation in all suspected and confirmed hate incidents or crimes.

Units Affected

UNC-CH Police Department Sworn and Non-Sworn Personnel


  • 2019 Annual Security Report of The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • Conspiracy Against Rights, 18 U.S.C. §241
  • FBI Hate Crime Data Collection Guidelines and Training Manual (accessed July 7, 2020)
  • International Association of Police Chief’s Model Policy: Investigations of Hate Crimes, September 2016
  • North Carolina General Statute (N.C.G.S.) §14-3 Punishments of Misdemeanor, Infamous Offenses, Committed in Secrecy and Malice, or with Deceit and Intent to Defraud, or with Ethnic Animosity
  • North Carolina General Statute §14-401.14 Ethnic Intimidation
  • The Matthew Shepard and James Byrd Jr. Hate Crime Prevention Act of 2009, 18 U.S.C. §249
  • UNC-CH Police Department General Order 01-04 Agency Jurisdiction
  • UNC-CH Police Department General Order 04-01 Patrol Operations
  • UNC-CH Police Department General Order 06-03 Body Worn Camera
  • UNC-CH Police Department General Order 08-03 Assignment and Documentation of Criminal Investigations
  • UNC-CH Police Department General Order 11-01 Communications Administration
  • UNC-CH Police Department General Order 11-02 Communications Procedures
  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Policy on Discrimination, Harassment and Related Misconduct Including Sexual and Gender-Based Harassment, Sexual Violence, Interpersonal Violence and Stalking
  • Violent Interference with Federally Protected Rights, 18 U.S.C. §247

Definitions and Descriptions

(Definitions included are from the FBI Hate Crime Data Collection Guidelines and University policy)

FBI Definitions

Disability: A physical or mental impairment, whether temporary or permanent, that is due to conditions that are congenital or acquired by heredity, accident, injury, advanced age, or illness.

Ethnic Group: A group of persons whose members identify with each other through a common heritage, often consisting of a shared language, culture, and/or ideology that stresses common ancestry.

Gender: Used synonymously with sex to denote whether an individual is male or female.

Gender Identity: A person’s internal sense of being male, female, or a combination of both; this internal sense of gender may be different from physical gender at birth.

Hate Crime: Criminal offense against a person or property motivated in whole or in part by an offender’s bias against a race, religion, disability, sexual orientation, ethnicity, gender, or gender identity.

Hate Incident: Those actions by an individual or group that, while motivated by hate or bias, do not rise to the level of a criminal offense.

Race: A group of persons who possess common physical characteristics, for example, color of skin, eyes, and/or facial features, and so forth, which are genetically transmitted by descent and heredity and that distinguish them as a distinct division of humankind.

Religious Group: A group of persons who share the same religious beliefs regarding the origin and purpose of the universe and the existence or nonexistence of a supreme being.

Sexual Orientation: A person’s physical, romantic, and/or emotional attraction to a member of the same and/or opposite sex.

UNC-CH Policy

Disability: A person with a disability is any person who has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities; or has a record of such impairment; or is regarded as having such impairment. A qualified person with a disability must be able to perform the essential functions of the employment or volunteer position or the academic, athletic, or extra-curricular program, with or without reasonable accommodation.

Gender: An individual’s socially constructed status based on the behavioral, cultural, or psychological traits typically associated with societal attribution of masculinity and femininity, typically related to one’s assigned sex at birth.

Gender Identity: Any gender with which individual identifies, regardless of which Gender was assigned at birth.

National Origin: An individual’s actual or perceived country or ethnicity of origin.

Race: An individual’s actual or perceived racial or ethnic ancestry or physical characteristics associated with a person’s race, such as a person’s color, hair, facial features, height, and weight.

Religion: All aspects of religious observance and practice, as well as belief. Examples of religious discrimination of harassment may include, but are not limited to, anti-Semitic comments, denying opportunities or benefits based on one’s head covering or other religious dress, and failure to provide reasonable accommodations for sincerely held religious beliefs and practices in accordance with the University’s Accommodations Policy. Conduct that may constitute religious discrimination or harassment may also constitute discrimination or harassment based on an individual’s National Origin.

Sexual Orientation: The inclination or capacity to develop intimate, spiritual, physical and/or sexual relationships with people of the same sex or Gender, a different sex or Gender, or irrespective of sex or Gender.

University: University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.


I. Response to a Potential Hate Incident or Hate Crime

A. Communications

When a telecommunicators receives a complaint of an apparent hate crime or hate incident or a compliant that appears to have the components of such a crime or incident, the telecommunicator dispatches a police unit immediately. The reporting party of any hate crime or incident is treated professionally and reassuringly, by the telecommunicator taking the call.

B. Responding Officer(s)

  1. Give priority to the needs and feelings of the victim(s). The officer(s) must not appear to be hurried in their efforts to obtain the facts of the case;
  2. Determine whether the incident meets the criteria of a hate crime or incident as outlined in the Definitions section above, if so, contact the on-duty supervisor to respond to the scene;
  3. Preserve the crime scene and evidence carefully;
  4. The officer asks the victim(s) about possible suspects. Officers should encourage the victim(s) to express their feelings which may yield useful information about motives, potential perpetrators, etc. Officers must NOT make assumptions or jump to conclusions;
  5. Ask the victim(s) and any other individuals present, if they are aware of any similar incidents in the area. Canvas the area, especially if located in an area that people live or has high foot traffic;
  6. Ensure that all statements made by suspects are recorded verbatim; exact language is important;
  7. If the crime or incident involved vandalism or graffiti, make sure you check the area for similar items and that they are all photographed;
  8. Provide the victim and any other individuals the victim assistance resource guide before you leave the scene;
  9. Complete an incident report, attaching all photographs, logging all evidence, and making sure, your body worn camera (BWC) is labeled and downloaded before the end of shift.

C. Shift Supervisor

  1. Respond immediately to the scene of any hate crimes or incidents;
  2. Speak with the responding officer(s) to obtain all the facts, ensure that the crime scene is protected and photographs are taken;
  3. Notify the staff duty officer and criminal investigations division (CID). If after speaking with Officer(s) to gather the facts, a determination is made if the on-call investigator is needed;
  4. Make all other notifications that are required, if any;
  5. Contact the UNC-CH Facilities Services to have any graffiti or vandalism removed or fixed as soon as possible; and
  6. Ensure all relevant facts have been documented on the incident report, supplements, arrest reports, etc. Verify that officers involved with the incident, have downloaded and labeled their body worn camera footage before the end of shift.


  1. Respond to assist shift on the call, upon request by the shift supervisor;
  2. Contact the victim within a reasonable amount of time; if during overnight hours, the next business day once reports and BWC footage is reviewed;
  3. Attempt to elicit additional motive and perpetrator information from the victim. Recap all available information and provide reassurance of police concern and commitment to combating hate crime;
  4. Take steps to make sure that the victim is getting the appropriate assistance;
  5. Make a final determination based on evidence and facts to whether the incident should be classified as a hate crime;
  6. Keep the appropriate UNC-CH Police personnel informed on the status of the case and coordinate any University investigations with the Title IX office or other University department(s); and
  7. Contact appropriate federal, state, and local agencies for assistance with serious cases, to include intelligence information.

II. Investigative Procedures

  1. Officers must recognize that single incidents such as vandalism or threats may initially appears as less serious when viewed in the larger context of all crime. Incident reports are reviewed for patterns of incidents occurring at either the same location or directed at an individual or group. What may begin as a minor incident escalates into a more series crime.
  2. The proper investigation of hate crimes or incidents is the responsibility of all UNC-CH Police Department police officers. Each officer must be sensitive to the feelings, needs, and fears that may be present in the UNC-CH community, as a result of incidents of this nature.


Article ID: 132121
Thu 4/8/21 9:24 PM
Fri 10/6/23 12:03 PM
Effective Date
If the date on which this document became/becomes enforceable differs from the Origination or Last Revision, this attribute reflects the date on which it is/was enforcable.
08/24/2020 12:00 AM
Issuing Officer
Name of the document Issuing Officer. This is the individual whose organizational authority covers the policy scope and who is primarily responsible for the policy.
Issuing Officer Title
Title of the person who is primarily responsible for issuing this policy.
Chief of Police
Last Review
Date on which the most recent document review was completed.
08/04/2023 12:00 AM
Last Revised
Date on which the most recent changes to this document were approved.
08/24/2020 12:00 AM
Next Review
Date on which the next document review is due.
11/01/2024 12:00 AM
Date on which the original version of this document was first made official.
07/09/1999 12:00 AM
Responsible Unit
School, Department, or other organizational unit issuing this document.
UNC Police