The Norfolk District Attorney's Office has a Civil Rights team made up of attorneys, victim-witness advocates and education and intervention service professionals who specialize in hate crimes and civil rights. The District Attorney’s Office works in cooperation with local police to investigate and prosecute hate crimes and criminal violations of civil rights.
Hate crimes threaten the very foundation on which our country was created: equality for all. Hate crimes are criminal acts against people or property that are motivated by prejudice based on race, religion, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender or disability. These include violent assaults and harassment, vandalism and graffiti. Massachusetts has a number of civil and criminal laws that specifically apply to hate crimes.
The District Attorney's Office has the power to prosecute hate crimes as criminal violations. The Massachusetts Attorney General's Office has the power to seek a civil injunction against anyone who is interfering with another person's civil rights.
Hate crimes have historically been underreported. This gives hate groups and individuals the mistaken impression that they will not be held accountable for their crimes. Hate crimes are serious offenses. Please help us help you. If you or someone you know is a victim of a hate crime, please report it to your local police.
DIVERSITY AWARENESS AND EDUCATION
The Crime Prevention Unit of the District Attorney's Office works together with schools, faith communities, cultural groups, community organizations and others to promote understanding and respect among individuals. A wide variety of diversity awareness and education resources and programs are available. For more information on diversity awareness and multiculturalism, please explore some of the following resources.
The Norfolk District Attorney’s Crime Prevention Unit offers information, resources, presentations and training to law enforcement, educators, nurses, students and others. A primary goal of the Unit is to promote awareness of hate crime and to provide resources for responding to and preventing such acts.