Tennessee and Violent Crime


I recently came across this article at Addicting Info pointing out that my beloved Tennessee had the most reported violent crime of any according to the FBI in 2012. I was shocked considering I generally think of Tennessee to be a peaceful place, especially compared to others that make it in the news frequently. Being a native Volunteer, I was forced to check the data and sure enough, it was correct. Tennessee was the most violent with 643.6 violent crimes per 100,000 residents followed by Nevada, Alaska, and New Mexico. My only solace was this excluded Washington, DC – that was by far the worst – just not a state.

2012 Violent Crime_State

The crime was predominantly focused around Memphis and Nashville, as would be expected with those being large cities. One bright spot was the relatively low crime rate of Chattanooga.

TN Crime

While I was prowling the FBI’s site, I also came across another interesting data set of reported violent crimes on Tennessee’s college campuses.

TN Crime on Campus

I am not a sociologist, so will leave it for them to sort out the reasons, but for my own benefit I put together the above graphics and wanted to archive them here. If you are interested, please share this. It isn’t good news, but in my opinion, is certainly news worth spreading. Tennessee is the most violent state in the country – ridiculous. Something has to change.

For additional information see Tennessee Crime Data and Map.


About Stuart Hale

Stuart is a forest and natural resource professional focused on ecosystem services, GIS/data management, and sustainable forestry. Find him on Twitter.

2 Responses to “Tennessee and Violent Crime”

  1. Stuart October 9, 2013 16:06

    Author’s Note: I recognize this is out of my ‘lane’ as it varies from natural resources. However, these graphic representations of data help me understand complex topics, and Tennessee is my home state and something I care about, therefore I wanted to share this post. Thanks for your understanding.


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