Officer-involved shootings are on the rise in Tennessee

(Photo: WKRN)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – Officer-involved shootings are on the rise across the state, and the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation thinks they’ll respond to even more this year.

Between 2011 and 2015, the TBI investigated 49 officer-involved shootings.

Last year, that number jumped to 70, and they’re expecting 85 in 2017. So far, they’ve responded to 18 since January.

These numbers don’t include the officer-involved shootings Metro police have investigated so far because the TBI only looks into fatal shootings in Nashville.

“We can’t speculate on why we’ve seen an uptick, but if you look at the numbers, we definitely have,” said spokeswoman Leslie Earhart.

“Our responsibility is to determine if laws were violated that resulted in injury or death to a law enforcement officer, the detainee, the arrestee or anyone else involved,” she added.

Earhart says the TBI is just an investigative tool, and once they’re finished with an investigation, they turn the findings over to the district attorney who decides whether or not to press charges.