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Virginia’s attorney general pushing for anti-hate crime laws

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring says he will propose legislation aimed at preventing hate crimes and white-supremacist violence.

Herring’s announcement on Thursday comes in response to an increase in hate crimes in Virginia and around the country, notably a deadly white nationalist rally in Charlottesville in August 2017.

This will be Herring’s third consecutive proposal of such legislation. Two previous attempts have failed to win approval from Virginia’s General Assembly.

Herring said his proposals would create more power for law enforcement to identify hate groups and step in before they commit violence. The measures would also bar anyone convicted of a hate crime from possessing a gun.

Herring has scheduled round-table discussions about his proposals around the state. He plans to introduce his proposals after the legislature reconvenes in January.

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