Code of the District of Columbia

§ 22–3701. Definitions.

For the purposes of this chapter, the term:

(1) “Bias-related crime” means a designated act that demonstrates an accused’s prejudice based on the actual or perceived race, color, religion, national origin, sex, age, marital status, personal appearance, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, family responsibility, homelessness, physical disability, matriculation, or political affiliation of a victim of the subject designated act.

(2) “Designated act” means a criminal act, including arson, assault, burglary, injury to property, kidnapping, manslaughter, murder, rape, robbery, theft, or unlawful entry, and attempting, aiding, abetting, advising, inciting, conniving, or conspiring to commit arson, assault, burglary, injury to property, kidnapping, manslaughter, murder, rape, robbery, theft, or unlawful entry.

(3) “Gender identity or expression” shall have the same meaning as provided in § 2-1401.02(12A).

(4) “Homelessness” means:

(A) The status or circumstance of an individual who lacks a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence; or

(B) The status or circumstance of an individual who has a primary nighttime residence that is:

(i) A supervised publicly or privately operated shelter designed to provide temporary living accommodations, including welfare motels, hotels, congregate shelters, and transitional housing for the mentally ill;

(ii) An institution that provides a temporary residence for individuals intended to be institutionalized; or

(iii) A public or private place not designed for, or ordinarily used as, a regular sleeping accommodation for human beings.


(May 8, 1990, D.C. Law 8-121, § 2, 37 DCR 27; Apr. 24, 2007, D.C. Law 16-305, § 37(a), 53 DCR 6198; June 25, 2008, D.C. Law 17-177, § 12(a), 55 DCR 3696; Mar. 25, 2009, D.C. Law 17-353, § 236(a), 56 DCR 1117; Dec. 10, 2009, D.C. Law 18-88, § 217(a), 56 DCR 7413.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 22-4001.

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 16-305, in par. (1), substituted “disability” for “handicap”.

D.C. Law 17-177, in par. (1), substituted “sexual orientation, gender identity or expression” for “sexual orientation”; and added par. (3).

D.C. Law 17-353 validated a previously made technical correction in par. (1).

D.C. Law 18-88, in par. (1), substituted “family responsibility, homelessness,” for “family responsibility,”; and added par. (4).

Cross References

Crime of violence defined, compensation of victims of violent crimes, see § 4-501.

Emergency Legislation

For temporary (90 day) amendment of section, see § 217(a) of Omnibus Public Safety and Justice Emergency Amendment Act of 2009 (D.C. Act 18-181, August 6, 2009, 56 DCR 6903).

For temporary (90 day) amendment of section, see § 217(a) of Omnibus Public Safety and Justice Congressional Review Emergency Amendment Act of 2009 (D.C. Act 18-227, October 21, 2009, 56 DCR 8668).