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Recently Donald Trump has been in the news for his negative comments about immigrants and in particular Mexican immigrants. Trumps comments, while upsetting to many in the community are only words–unfortunately police are investigating whether someone may have resorted to violence based on their anti-immigrant or anti-Latino bias.

Fox59 reported that this weekend a young man was shot on the Northwest side of Indianapolis after leaving the Una Parada grocery store. According to reports the shooter shouted an anti-Hispanic slur. Also there was another shooting at a Tortas restaurant involving a similar vehicle and bullet caliber. Finally, a Latino-owned business was robbed at gunpoint in the same area. Check out the video from Fox59 here:  http://fox59.com/2015/09/07/suspects-who-shot-14-year-old-boy-while-walking-with-mother-allegedly-yelled-racial-slur/ Police are investigating a possible connection and investigating whether the crimes were motivated by an anti-Latino or anti-immigrant bias.

Unfortunately anti-Latino hate crimes have been increasing in recent years. http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2014/02/20/hate-crime-victimization-statistics-show-rise-in-anti-hispanic-crime.html Indiana is one of the few states that doesn’t have a specific hate crimes law—although there have been proposals to change that in the state legislature as recently as this year. http://www.indianapolisrecorder.com/news/article_d06bc77c-a7d3-11e4-8b27-1fa8df8c1d84.html However, this doesn’t mean that the person who fired those shots this weekend will be off the hook—police and prosecutors can still investigate and prosecute the criminal actions of a perpetrator without a special law to address the hateful motivation.

Victims of violent hate crimes who have cooperated with law enforcement in spite of being undocumented may be able to benefit from the U-visa—like these hate crime victims in San Francisco http://www.sfweekly.com/thesnitch/2011/03/17/illegal-immigrants-more-hate-crime-victims-could-get-visas If you or someone you know has been the victim of a hate crime or another serious crime and is interested in evaluating the possibility of the U-visa, contact our office today317-843-2606.