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Knoxville Officials Looking for Ways to Curb Juvenile Violence This Summer

Posted on in Criminal Defense


Knoxville criminal defense for Juvenile crimeGun violence has reached epidemic proportions around the country. Tragically, Knoxville has not been spared. So far this year, 22 victims have been shot to death. According to information released by the Knoxville Police Department, five of the victims were teenagers and, just as alarming, three of those accused of committing the murders are also teens.

Knoxville Community Involvement

Now that summer is here, the concern is that the violence will escalate since teens are out of school and have more time on their hands. This has led Knoxville officials to look for different ways to help minimize the violence and keep teens off the streets and out of trouble.

The city has partnered with 13 different community groups to employ teens from 12 to 21 years of age who have been identified as high risk for either perpetrating a violent crime or being a victim of one. High-risk youth are referred to as “opportunity youth.” Knoxville officials have awarded grants of between $3,000 to $20,000 to organizations that have developed programs that will introduce mentors to teens, teach them job skills, and provide activities that will keep them occupied.

Similar programs have been in operation for years in Boston, Chicago, New York City, and other locations with positive results. These programs have resulted in increased school attendance and a reduction in violent crime arrests.

The 13 organizations that are involved in the Knoxville program are:

  • Battlefield Farms

  • Canvas Can Do Miracles

  • Drums up Guns Down

  • Karate Five Association

  • MCA Sports Association

  • Mynark Tribe

  • Penultimate Development

  • Safe Haven

  • SEEED

  • Sols Write House

  • The 5th Woman

  • The Bottom

  • YWCA

In addition to the community groups, Knoxville Police are also focusing on resources to help lessen the violence. The department has created a new patrol unit – the Community Engagement Response Team – that is made up of two sergeants and 10 police officers. According to a statement by the chief of police, the unit is focused on chasing down leads and tips, without having to stop to answer a street call from dispatch. According to the chief of police, the unit is “. . .not tied to the radio in any way.”

Contact a Knox County Defense Attorney

Many juvenile crimes are committed by teens who just did not think at the time or felt pressured by peers to engage in criminal activity. Unfortunately, all it takes is one bad decision to have a profound impact on a teen’s future. If your child has been arrested or accused of a violent crime, you need a dedicated Knoxville, TN juvenile crimes defense attorney on your side. Jeffrey Coller, Knoxville Criminal Defense Lawyer has extensive experience in dealing with the Tennessee juvenile justice system. Call our office today at 865-281-1000 to schedule a free consultation and find out how we can help.

Sources:

https://knoxvilletn.gov/government/city_departments_offices/community_empowerment/summer_youth_violence_prevention_pilot_summer_2021

https://www.knoxnews.com/story/news/local/2021/06/29/knoxvilles-new-summer-job-program-aims-put-risk-youth-work/7699639002/

 

https://www.usnews.com/news/best-states/tennessee/articles/2021-06-12/knoxville-police-create-unit-to-try-to-stop-shooting-deaths

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