Reported hate crimes increased across the country and in Vermont last year, according to data released Monday by the FBI.
The FBI defines a hate crime as quote "a traditional offense like murder, arson or vandalism with an added element of bias."
The data released this week shows that last year the number of hate crimes rose to 6,121 from 5,850 in 2015 — a 4.6 percent increase.
Most of the victims in the 2016 data, 58.9 percent, were targeted because of their race or ethnicity.
Vermont's numbers were similar — 64 percent of victims were targeted for their race or ethnicity.
The statistics are reported voluntarily by local law-enforcement. According to the state, most Vermont law enforcement agencies participate.