State Criminal Justice Profile


BJA Investments

In Fiscal Year 2014, BJA provided more than $9 million* in state and local funds to Tennessee.

Justice Assistance Grant Program—State Formula $5,095,990
Justice Assistance Grant Program—26 Local Awards $2,224,222
Other Direct Discretionary Funds $1,939,747

Source: Bureau of Justice Assistance
*This amount does not include funding for national training and technical assistance programs that benefit all states and territories.

PDF IconInvestment Details

Justice Assistance Grant (JAG) Program—State Formula

Grantee Name GMS Project Period Project Title GMS Award Amount
Tennessee Department of Finance and Administration 10/01/2013 – 09/30/2017 Tennessee’s Strategy for the FY 2014 Edward Byrne Memorial JAG Program $5,095,990

Justice Assistance Grant (JAG) Program—Local Awards

Grantee Name GMS Project Period Project Title GMS Award Amount
Blount County 10/01/2013 – 09/30/2015 Blount County Sheriff 2014–15 Interoperable Radio Equipment Enhancement—JAG Local Solicitation $20,209
City of Athens 10/01/2013 – 09/30/2015 Evidence Management System Update $13,323
City of Brownsville 10/01/2013 – 09/30/2015 Brownsville City 2014 JAG Officer Safety $10,664
City of Chattanooga 10/01/2013 – 09/30/2017 BJA 2014 JAG Program $138,107
City of Clarksville 10/01/2013 – 09/30/2017 Clarksville-Montgomery County Law Enforcement Program $63,734
City of Cleveland 10/01/2013 – 09/30/2017 In-Vehicle Video Cameras and Body Cameras $46,881
City of Columbia 10/01/2013 – 09/30/2017 Law Enforcement Equipment $31,967
City of Cookeville 10/01/2013 – 09/30/2015 FY 2014 JAG Program $10,490
City of Crossville 10/01/2013 – 09/30/2015 Marked Patrol Car Project $11,211
City of Dyersburg 10/01/2013 – 09/30/2015 FY 2014 JAG Program $12,851
City of East Ridge 10/01/2013 – 09/30/2015 2014 Edward Byrne Grant Memorial JAG $12,329
City of Jackson 10/01/2013 – 09/30/2017 FY 2014 JAG Project $65,275
City of Johnson City 10/01/2013 – 09/30/2015 Johnson City Specialty Prosecutor Program $21,849
City of Kingsport 10/01/2013 – 09/30/2017 Technology and Equipment Advancement and Improvement $27,666
City of Knoxville 10/01/2013 – 09/30/2017 Knoxville and Knox County 2014 JAG Program $175,442
City of Lebanon 10/01/2013 – 09/30/2015 2014 Byrne Grant—Mobile Data Terminals (MDT) Project $14,715
City of Morristown 10/01/2013 – 09/30/2015 Investigative Technology and Efficiency Program $15,909
City of Murfreesboro 10/01/2013 – 09/30/2017 2014 Law Enforcement Equipment Purchase Program $67,090
Cocke County 10/01/2013 – 09/30/2015 Law Enforcement Equipment Project $12,528
Greene County 10/01/2013 – 09/30/2015 Digital Video Enhancement Project $12,453
Metropolitan Government of Nashville and Davidson County 10/01/2013 – 09/30/2017 2014 Edward Byrne Memorial JAG $532,216
Sevier County 10/01/2013 – 09/30/2015 FY 2014 JAG Program $11,335
Shelby County 10/01/2013 – 09/30/2017 Criminal Justice Projects $838,332
Sullivan County 10/01/2013 – 09/30/2017 Sullivan County Sheriff's Office 2014 JAG $25,581
Tipton County 10/01/2013 – 09/30/2015 Tipton County Equipment and Software Project $16,654
Washington County 10/01/2013 – 09/30/2015 Officer First Aid Equipment Project $15,411

Other Direct Discretionary Funds

Grantee Name GMS Project Period Project Title GMS Award Amount
City of Memphis 10/01/2014 – 09/30/2016 Western District of Tennessee FY 2014 Project Safe Neighborhoods Initiative $148,885
Tennessee Department of Finance and Administration 10/01/2013 – 09/30/2017 Tennessee 2014 State Residential Substance Abuse Treatment for State Prisoners (RSAT) Program $179,107
Tennessee Department of Finance and Administration 10/01/2014 – 09/30/2015 FY 2014 State of Tennessee JAG Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA) Reallocation Grant Application $111,755
Tennessee Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services 10/01/2014 – 09/30/2017 Tennessee Veterans Court Initiative $1,500,000

Law Enforcement Agencies and Officers

Law Enforcement Agencies: 452

Sworn Officers: 16,595

City     County     Tribal     State     Other

Source: FBI Uniform Crime Report (2013)

  • More than 87% of the 452 law enforcement agencies in Tennessee have 50 or fewer sworn officers.
  • Nearly 53% of sworn officers work for agencies with 100 or more officers.

Officer Fatalities and Assaults

Between 2004 and 2013, 12 officers were feloniously killed (0 in 2013) and 15 officers were accidentally killed in the line of duty. In 2013, 1,704 officers were assaulted (3.42% of all officers assaulted in the United States).

Crime Trends

According to the FBI Annual Report, nationwide violent crime in 2013 decreased more than 4% from the 2012 estimates. Below are the current crime trends for Tennessee:

Crime 2012 2013 %
Violent Crime 41,550 38,364 -7.7
Murder and Manslaughter 388 328 -15.5
Forcible Rape* 2,032 3,993 N/A
Robbery 8,169 7,307 -10.6
Aggravated Assault 30,961 28,378 -8.3
Property Crime 217,664 206,629 -5.1
Burglary 56,181 50,999 -9.2
Larceny-Theft 148,503 143,802 -3.2
Motor Vehicle Theft 12,980 11,828 -8.9
*This state’s agencies submitted rape data according to the revised UCR definition of rape.

Arrest Data

In 2013, total arrests (371,938) increased 4.38% from 2012. Violent-crime arrests increased 6.52% (17,896), and property-related arrests increased 3.96% (45,903).
Source: FBI Uniform Crime Reports

Court Structure

Court of Last Resort:    Supreme Court
Intermediate Appellate:    Court of Criminal Appeals
General Jurisdiction:    Criminal Court
Limited Jurisdiction:    Juvenile Court; Municipal Court; General Sessions Court


Prisoner Admissions: 13,803
Prisoner Releases: 16,348
Total Prisoners: 28,521

Source: Bureau of Justice Statistics (2013)

Major Correctional Facilities: 14

Source: Tennessee Department of Correction

Recidivism Rate*: 49.2%

Source: Tennessee State Government
*The percentage of felony inmates who are reincarcerated within 3 years of the year in which they were released from incarceration in a local jail or Department of Correction facility.

Top Offenses: Murder, forcible sex offenses, aggravated assault (FY 2014)

Source: Tennessee Department of Correction

Regional Informations Sharing Systems® (RISS)

The Regional Organized Crime Information Center (ROCIC), a RISS Center, serves Tennessee. There are 254 Tennessee criminal justice agencies that are members of ROCIC.
Source: Regional Information Sharing Systems

Seal of Tennessee


In Tennessee, Byrne JAG state funding has assisted with numerous innovative initiatives and supports:

  • Statewide trainings on human trafficking for law enforcement and community supervision agents. Provided by the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, the training focuses on spreading awareness, helping individuals detect possible trafficking, and understanding best practices for working with trafficked individuals.

  • Targeted Community Crime Reduction Projects (TCCRPs), which focus on targeted resources for developing evidence-based crime reduction strategies in cities with high rates of violent and drug-related crime. Funds were used to plan and coordinate local responses to domestic violence and child abuse and to hire crime analysts to support the implementation of evidence-based hot-spot policing efforts within TCCRP sites.

  • Trauma debriefing and counseling. Volunteer Behavioral Health Care Services of Tennessee—in collaboration with the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, the Tennessee Association of Chiefs of Police, and the Tennessee Sheriffs’ Association—provides trauma debriefing and counseling to help officers involved in a shooting work through residual trauma or post-traumatic stress associated with the shooting.

  • Equipment purchases. Multiple state agencies and 11 localities purchased equipment to support their Rape Kit DNA backlog reduction efforts, including the TBI Forensic Science Division and the Memphis-Shelby County Forensic Science Center.

Source: National Criminal Justice Association

PDF IconDetails on Tennessee’s priorities and planning process

State Administering Agency (SAA)

Tennessee Department of Finance and Administration, Office of Criminal Justice Programs Bill Scollon, Director

Tennessee At-A-Glance

Total Population: 6,495,978
Population Under 18: 1,491,577
Population Over 65: 952,376

Source: U.S. Census (2013 est.)

State Investigative Agency:
Tennessee Bureau of Investigation Mark Gwyn, Director

Local Governments: 916
Source: U.S. Census (2012)

Federally Recognized Tribes: 0
Source: Bureau of Indian Affairs

U.S. Attorneys’ Offices: Nancy S. Harr—Eastern District of Tennessee, Knoxville David Rivera—Middle District of Tennessee, Nashville Edward L. Stanton III—Western District of Tennessee, Memphis Source: U.S. Department of Justice

Homeland Security Agency: Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security David W. Purkey, Assistant Commissioner and Homeland Security Advisor

Drug Courts: 54
Source: National Drug Court Resource Center