Violent crime decreases in Springfield, reports of rape spike

Jason Head

Violent, criminal activity is down for the most part in Springfield this year, according to the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation’s (TBI) release of the 2018 Crime in Tennessee report.  

Not all of the news is positive, however.

Out of 1,777 incidents of criminal activity in Robertson County’s county seat, the reports of forcible rape went up nearly 74-percent for the year 2018.

The annual comprehensive report is based on law enforcement agencies reporting incidents of criminal activity to the Tennessee Incident Based Reporting System (TIBRS), which is the State of Tennessee’s version of the Federal Bureau of Investigations National Incident Report Based System (NIBRS).

Springfield Police Chief Jason Head reported the numbers to the Springfield Board of Mayor and Aldermen at the Tuesday, May 21 meeting.

“(A majority of the) violent criminal activity, which includes homicide and aggravated assaults went down significantly,” Head said. “We increased from six reported rapes to 13.”

Head told the board he had no explanation for the reason of the high number, but in looking at the 2019 data, from the first of the year compared to the same time last year, he said the city is down on the number of forcible rapes.

In crimes against property, robbery is down 20-percent and the number of burglaries has dropped 70-percent, he said.

“We look at these numbers closely, because they’re quality of life issues,” Head said. “If your house or your car are getting broken into, (those) are both things people look at when they decide to come to Springfield. We want to make this the safest place for people to do business and to live.”

Head warned that there are a lot of juveniles coming from the Nashville area targeting neighborhoods and cars and taking property from motor vehicles, especially when the vehicles are left unattended and unlocked.

They’re looking for cell phones, firearms and money, according to Head.

Other increases in Springfield crime included DUI arrests and traffic citations. Crimes against society was up in the areas of narcotics violations and weapon law violations.

Head noted that the partnership shared with the Robertson County Sheriff’s Office, the Tennessee Highway Patrol and other governmental agencies has helped Springfield in its effort to lower crime.

Statewide, the TBI reports murder is down 8-percent; rape is down 4.7-percent; domestic violence is down 6-percent; and meth-related offenses are up.

The 2018 Crime Overview data for Springfield and all of Tennessee can be found on the TBI’s web-site at:

https://www.tn.gov/tbi/crime-issues/crime-issues/crime-statistics

Click on crime statistics and then publications to access statewide data.

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