NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — We talk about it time and time again, crimes being committed by young teens.
“I don’t think the cycle ever ends,” said Contrecia Tharpe with Impact Youth Outreach.
On Tuesday, the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation released it’s 2021, “Crime in Tennessee Report.” The more than 500-page document outlined where and who are committing crimes. The report released juvenile crime increased, and it made advocates ask “why?”
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“When we go in and we talk to kids, what are the four things that you feel like we need to work on as adults to make sure you don’t end up back here. They say opportunities, education, jobs, and a better relationship with the police,” explained Tharpe.
Tharpe says the numbers aren’t shocking, especially in the Metro area. The TBI report revealed more than 600 juveniles were arrested, the majority of them committing some type of assault.
“It doesn’t alarm me that the statistic has risen. I think that it will continue to rise, you know, I think that we will be here next year looking at that same number and wondering why it has risen again,” said Tharpe.
While organizations across the city are hoping to create a change, others say they have experienced juvenile crime personally and believe change starts in the courtroom.
“December the 16th, 2020, the worst call in my life, in my family’s life, is to hear that my son has been shot and killed,” said Mamie Turner.
Turner is waiting for her day in court, scheduled for August 3, for the teen charged with shooting and killing her son, Lee Turner Jr., outside of the bus station on Nolensville Pike.
“They were 16 when they took Lee’s life, and so doing a harsh crime like taking someone’s life you should not be in juvenile, you should be taken to a higher court,” said Turner.
She, along with another Nashville family, is asking the judge to move the 17-year-old charged in this shooting, out of Juvenile Court, so they can be tried as an adult. She is hoping it will send a message to others.