Delaware AG Matt Denn takes pro-active approach to hate crimes

Attorney General Matt Denn (Zoe Read/WHYY)

Attorney General Matt Denn (Zoe Read/WHYY)

Delaware schools and law enforcement will explore some new guidelines when it comes to handling threats or any violent behaviors.

The Delaware Department of Justice issued the guidelines as a result of the increasing number of threatening incidents throughout the country post-election. Since President-elect Donald Trump beat out Hillary Clinton last week, there have been reports of people being intimidated across the country based on their race, religion, and/or sexuality.

“Threats and intimidation against our neighbors based on who they are will not be accepted here in Delaware,” Attorney General Matt Denn said.

Earlier this week, Denn addressed those concerns by reaching out to local law enforcement and education leaders to remind them of the proper use of the state’s statutes and regulations regarding such incidents in Delaware. Behaviors that fall under the umbrella of threats and intimidation range from hate crimes to school bullying (including cyberbullying).

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“There are First Amendment issues that arise when law enforcement or school officials apply laws relating to speech, so these guidelines explain to law enforcement and school officials how they can apply the law consistently with those First Amendment considerations,” Denn said.

Denn urged anyone who hasn’t received an appropriate response from law enforcement or school authorities to contact the Department of Justice Office of Civil Rights and Public Trust at 302-577-5400.

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