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Study shows rise in crime locally, statewide

Jacob Smith • Apr 20, 2018 at 4:13 PM

The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation on Friday released its 2017 Crime in Tennessee report, which revealed a slight overall increase in reported instances of crime in the most recent reporting year.

The annual study compiles data reported form each law enforcement agency in the state through the Tennessee Incident Based Reporting System. The TBI’s crime reporting system, in place for more than 15 years, provides an updated and comprehensive picture of the successes and challenges that face communities across Tennessee.

According to the report, the incidents reported by the Wilson County Sheriff’s Office rose from 1,752 to 2,155. However, despite the increase, the number of cases cleared rose from 37.9 percent to 45.3 percent.

The Lebanon Police Department saw a similar amount of crimes, as well as percentage of crimes cleared in 2017 compared to 2016. There were 3,184 offenses in 2017, compared to 3,199 in 2016. Lebanon police cleared 41.9 percent of the offenses compared to 41.7 percent in 2016.

The Mt. Juliet Police Department reported a rise from 1,452 offenses in 2016 to 1,601 in 2017. The percentage of cases cleared stayed steady with 62 percent in 2016 compared to 62.1 percent in 2017.

Among the findings statewide in the 2017 report:

• reported instances of murder increased 6.7 percent from 2016 to 2017.

• reported rape offenses increased 3.2 percent in the same time period.

• the number of individuals arrested in connection to reported crimes decreased by .1 percent from 2016 to 2017.

• juveniles accounted for 6.4 percent of all arrests, down from 6.5 percent in the previous year.

“We’re extremely thankful for our dedicated law enforcement partners,” said TBI director Mark Gwyn. “Together, they helped us compile a thorough snapshot of crime in Tennessee. We now hope every department takes this information and works to further address the key crime issues facing their communities and our state.”

There are 532 reporting agencies in Tennessee, and for the second consecutive year, all agencies were compliant with TIBRS reporting.

Tennessee is one of 16 states with 100 percent compliance. Nationally, 34 states are currently NIBRS-certified.

The full 2017 Crime in Tennessee report is available online at tn.gov/tbi.

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