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Labeling, 2015

Spectrum of labels

Victim Child welfare perspective
Offender Public safety perspective
  • In need of aid, assistance, or care

  • In need of services

  • In need of supervision

  • Unruly

  • Status offender

In Tennessee, status offense cases are classified as unruly children and include truancy, being disobedient of the reasonable and lawful commands of a parent or guardian, committing an offense applicable only to a child, and being a runaway.

Age boundaries, 2016

  • Status offense jurisdiction

    Up through 17 years old

    No lower age specified

  • Delinquency jurisdiction

    Up through 17 years old

    No lower age specified

    Explore summaries »

In Tennessee, no lower age is specified for an “unruly child.” The highest age a child’s conduct can be considered a status offense is 17. Non-delinquent behaviors include: truancy, disobedience, running away, and child-only offenses. At times, jurisdiction can extend for voluntary services up to age 21. TN ST § 37-1-102

Reported data

Progressive data, 2016

The Tennessee Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges reports related cases across delinquency, dependency and status/unruly offense cases in its annual juvenile court statistics reports. The reporting utilizes diagrams to visually display youth in juvenile court on multiple legal statuses. The report also provides details specific to status offense cases including demographics (race, sex), intake actions (petition filed, citation processed, etc.), source of referral, reason for referral, and whether the youth was substantiated as a status offender.

View the Tennessee Juvenile Court Judges Commission (annual statistical report series) >>

About this project

Juvenile Justice GPS (Geography, Policy, Practice, Statistics) is a project to develop a repository providing state policy makers and system stakeholders with a clear understanding of the juvenile justice landscape in the states.

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