Metro Nashville Police saw a spike in violent teen crime at the beginning of the year.
Most recently five teens, two of which were 13 years old, were arrested in Hermitage when they should have been in school. They face charges for stealing a car.
Metro Police Lt. Blaine Whited with the Teen Crime Task Force said four 12-year-olds, 13 13-year-olds, 39 15-year-olds, 42 16-year-olds and 54 17-year-olds have been arrested. All of them have committed serious crimes, some felonies ranging from stealing cars and carrying weapons.
The uptick in teen crimes started earlier this year.
“The increase that we saw right off the bat this year was robberies, personal robberies,” said Whited. “Robberies of a person and carjackings.”
Violent crimes increased in January and February.
“Right off the bat there was some really serious offenses that happened,” said Whited. “Early in the year some innocent people were carjacked and robbed and they were shot for no reason.”
Police aren’t seeing violent crimes increase, instead another crime is going up.
“What we are seeing an increase in is juveniles carrying guns,” said Whited.
A 16-year-old was arrested on Thursday for illegally carrying a weapon. He was arrested during the day when he should have been in school.
According to Metro Schools, truancy in the district is at 3.3 percent, that’s nearly 2,800 students out of 85,000 across the district.
“We only focus on kids in stolen cars and kids with weapons,” said Whited.
The Teen Crime Task Force has recovered 94 stolen vehicles and has taken 127 guns off the streets.