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Sun, Jul 13, 2014

TBI: La Vergne crime rate is lowest in decade

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LA VERGNE - The official release of the “Crime in Tennessee 2012” Report by the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation confirmed what Police Chief Mike Walker suspected: The city of La Vergne in 2012 experienced its lowest crime rate in at least a decade.

Along with that statistic comes the good news that among the larger cities in Rutherford County, as well as 12 cities of comparable size throughout the state, La Vergne has the fourth lowest rate for Group A crimes (felony crimes). The La Vergne crime rate in 2012 was lower than both Smyrna and Murfreesboro.

“A sign of a good leader is someone who surrounds themselves with qualified, smart people,” said Chief Walker. “We have had the great fortune of hiring and retaining incredibly talented, professional law enforcement officers and it is my privilege to work with each of them. This team is a force to be reckoned with.”

In 2012, the crime rate had dropped a whopping 54 percent to 5,181 from its highest rate of 9,258 in 2005. Most recently, it dropped 7 percent from 2010 to 2011 and 17 percent from 2011 to 2012, or about 24 percent in the last two years.

“I have heard people remark that the actions in the last two years at City Hall and at the Police Department have disrupted lives and they have said ‘it would all come out in the wash soon.’ I am here to tell you this laundry is looking pretty good right now,” said Mayor Senna Mosley. “We are seeing a direct correlation between the Board adequately funding and equipping our law enforcement officers with this drastic reduction in crimes committed in our city. I am incredibly proud of our police force, every single one of them in patrol and crime suppression, criminal investigation, dispatch, and administration.”

Total offenses have fallen 20.2 percent, crimes against property have fallen 39 percent, and arrests are up 5.6 percent. However, domestic violence offenses continue to be of great concern.

They make up more than 51 percent of all crimes against persons in the state and 40.2 percent of the crimes against persons in La Vergne.

The first action a victim of domestic violence can take is contacting the police to report the incident. A hospital will treat any wounds, as well as helping to document injuries. A victim may then seek shelter in a safe place and file a protective order.

“Our police are available at any time, day or night, to help any victims of domestic violence or other crimes,” said Chief Walker. “Our duty is to ensure the safety of lives and property in La Vergne and we will do everything in our power to protect our community and its citizens.”

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Members Opinions:
May 01, 2013 at 9:25pm
It is always nice to see crime rates falling in any city. However, this one hits close to home for me. I spent most of childhood living and growing up in La Vergne. When I first moved there, all I heard were bad things about it and about how it was a bad area to live in. My childhood, however, went very well, and I never had any problems living in La Vergne. It always hurt to hear people talking about how bad it was. I can now point to these facts and be more proud of the city I am from. This is also important to me because my parents still live in La Vergne. They are getting older, so I would hate for them to live in a city where crime was a major problem. Obviously, the one troubling fact in this story is the rising numbers of domestic violence in the city. I think this needs to be looked at very closely, and the authorities need to do whatever possible to control this. I hope that the numbers of domestic violence will go down in La Vergne in the coming years so that it can become that much safer of a place to live.
May 02, 2013 at 3:37pm
These statistics found by the TBI are great! Not only for La Vergne, but for the entire state of Tennessee as they obviously played a part in lowering crime rates state wide (which was also reported by the TBI). This story does not include all statistics for the city of La Vergne, but I think that just as mentioned, good leadership and qualified professionals have played a huge role in the transformation of this city. I am unaware of how La Vergne’s police force operated in the past, but it is simply a fact that without proper and competent management as well as positive, influential role models within the force, members of the city will not encompass the respect for society or one another that is needed to maintain a safe and prolific conurbation.
It is exciting to see how proud and appreciative Chief Walker is of the law enforcement officers, and that type of reinforcement and encouragement is exactly what will keep the police force performing at full capacity and with such professionalism. It is only with such commendable effort exerted, that any city can expect to see positive results from its people. Without effective law enforcement, crime can literally take over and destroy a city. High crime rates in cities are known to decrease resident’s satisfaction with their neighborhoods, result in less local involvement, and lower house values. All of these things can greatly stunt the economic growth of a city which can hurt even the most law-abiding and wealthy of citizens.
May 02, 2013 at 9:34pm
Chg2j_mtsu_s13
It’s good to see that things are getting better out there for everyone. It’s good that we as communities are trying to be more law abiding citizens. The story went a little off topic when it moved solely towards the area of domestic violence. La Vergne taking initiative and dropping the crime rates is a really good thing for the surrounding areas may also hop on the bandwagon and start to make a better place to live for the residents. Cities and towns around Nashville, Tennessee have always been known to have higher crime rates, so when they start dropping, anyone can tell the times are changing for the better. Law enforcement has really been cracking down on people who break the law (even when it comes to simple seatbelt laws) like the commercials said the police would. Crime rates are dropping so highly everywhere around the state, I would presume. I’m also very happy to see the class involvement in commenting on this story since MTSU has a sometimes occurrence with violence. Any positive move forward to making our home a better home is an always appealing idea that we are making a reality. Maybe one day crime will be as low as it is in other countries.
May 03, 2013 at 4:22pm
The lowering of a crime rate by any number is always a good thing. I’m glad that the city of La Vergne has taken measures to do so and shown significant improvement in their statistics. The fact the improvement has been so drastic over the past 7 years is a great thing to me. This means that they have retained people competent and haven’t become content with one giant step in improving their city. The numbers should serve as a sort of pride for them and I believe they’ll continually work to better them however long that takes. It’s unfortunate that domestic abuse is still a big problem there but that’s something that the people of the town have to really work to change along with the officers. They can patrol areas to keep robberies and things like that at bay, but they can’t patrol our homes. Hopefully seeing this will spark a change in the attitudes of the citizens and they can aid their department in becoming a great city with an extremely low crime rate. I hope to see more about the efforts being taken and see another drastic decrease in crime next year.
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