Knox County Sheriff - Sheriff J.J. Jones
The Knox County Sheriff's Office Animal Control Division provides quality enforcement pertaining to public safety, animal control, and animal welfare. Our Animal Control officers are highly-trained, experienced officers. They investigate animal welfare cases and respond to a variety of citizen requests for service. Some of these services include: leash law enforcement, regulating barking dogs, regulating vicious/dangerous dogs, rabies control, bite quarantines, large animal welfare calls, and horse/cows running-at-large. The Animal Control Division falls within the Patrol Division and the partnership began in July 2010 as a result of reorganization between KCSO and the Young-Williams Animal Center. The Animal Control Division has seven full-time Animal Control officers.
The unit assists patrol in all enforcements functions such as pursuits, officer safety, drug bust support, marijuana eradication, special operations and search and rescue. It provides services to any surrounding counties that request help.
The unit was formed in 1996 when the Sheriff’s Office procured surplus helicopters from the military. It now has a fleet of four OH-58+ and one UH-1H (Huey). It is strictly operated by drug seizures, fines and forfeitures at little cost to taxpayers.
The helicopters have been called to assist during national disasters such as flood ravaged North Carolina when Hurricane Floyd hit the state and during Hurricane Katrina in Louisiana.
The Cold Case Investigation Until was established in February 2008 to reconsider unsolved homicides by re-examining the case file, re-interviewing witnesses and suspects, and reprocessing old evidence by applying modern innovative technology. The unit has worked to digitally upload all documents, audio and video recordings, photographs, and miscellaneous items in each case file, making it more accessible in both a paper and an electronic format.
The Knox County Sheriff’s Office operates three facilities, each offering a secure and well-maintained environment for the inmate population, while providing for the safety of staff and surrounding communities.
New corrections officers attend a Correctional Officer Training Academy that is eleven weeks in length, one of the longest and most comprehensive in the southeastern United States.
The Roger D. Wilson Detention Facility utilizes a direct supervision concept where inmates live in one of 19 pods, with a total of 1036 beds. One pod is an infirmary that houses males in one section and females in another. The Knox County Jail utilizes the linear supervision concept, where inmates are in individual cell blocks, with a total of 215 beds. The Knox County Work Release Center houses approximately 90 inmates who are on work crews.
The Intake Center, serving all local, state, and federal law enforcement communities, is the gateway into the Knox County Penal System and processes more than 30,000 individuals each year.
The Knox County Sheriff’s Office strives to reduce the rate of recidivism through a variety of programs, which allows inmates to prepare themselves to again become productive citizens.
This division provides certified officers in and around the court areas. They also assist in the screening people as they enter the City/County Building and the Old Courthouse through metal detectors and they check items through x-ray machines.
The Bailiffs are assigned to work with a specific judge and are responsible for opening court and managing the courtroom.
The Forensics Unit responds to crime scenes to interpret, collect, document, and store evidence. The unit provides the investigator with a starting point by determining the identities of suspects and victims and to piece together the physical evidence found at the scene.
The division investigates property crime such as burglary, theft, auto theft, vandalism, fraud and forgery. The detectives work very hard to have one of the highest clearance rates in the country. Hundreds of thousands of dollars I stolen property is recovered and returned to the rightful owners every year.
The unit works with many agencies such as the FBI Safe Street Task Force, the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force, U.S. Marshals, and the U.S. Attorney’s Office Anti-Terrorism Advisory Committee as they share information and help make our area safe. Officers also conduct classes on homeland security issues and gang education.
The Juvenile Crime Task Force works with Juvenile Court in investigating, arresting, and serving court orders against adults who have been accused of committing a crime against a child. The Task Force is looks for solutions to juvenile problems by working with DCS, Knox County Schools, the Attorney General’s Office and Helen Ross McNabb.
The unit is committed to the thorough and timely investigation for all crimes assigned to it. The detectives use teamwork, proven and nationally accepted interview techniques, innovative thinking, and crime scene forensic analysis to help solve homicides and other major crimes.
The Narcotics Unit was created to reinforce the efforts of the Metro Unit, especially in the rural area. The unit has grown in size and handles all the special investigations at the Sheriff’s Office. The Narcotics Unit also has a Task Force attached to the FBI, the DEA, and the ATF.
The OPS makes sure that officers are held to the highest standards of officials conduct. The office processes, documents, and investigates allegations of misconduct and policy and procedural violations. It also investigates incidents where an officer has discharged a firearm. The OPS staff strives to maintain citizen confidence as well as guarantee due process protection to citizens and officers alike.
The Patrol Division maintains a strong presence in neighborhoods and around businesses in Knox County. The Traffic Unit focuses on traffic enforcement which frees the Patrol Division to concentrate more on personal safety.
This is the umbrella division for a variety of functions: grants, media relations, special events, website, and videos. Since the division was formed in 1994, it has procured millions of dollars to put more officers on the street and in the schools, develop special programs for corrections, technology, and community projects.
Media Relations is the most visible part of the unit as it deals with local, state, and national media to provide interviews, story idea, press releases, mug shots and updating the website and media line with current information.
Reserve officers are volunteers who are an integral part of the Sheriff’s Office. They perform various duties that include assisting patrol, corrections, undercover retail theft operations, forensics, accident reconstruction, and in-service training. Sometimes a patrol car isn’t practical for patrolling certain areas. That’s when you’ll see reserve officers on bicycles patrolling parks, neighborhoods, and shopping areas.
This division covers all public schools in Knox County: 25 elementary and intermediate schools, 7 middle schools and 9 high schools. The focus is protection as officers provide security and interact with both staff and students. This interaction helps students develop a rapport with the officers and help form trust. This trust has led to the prevention of many serious crimes.
During the summer months, the division joins the Patrol Division to assist in answering calls for service and increasing patrols in neighborhoods and around businesses throughout Knox County.
The key word in Special Services is "service." This division offers a wide variety of services for Knox County citizens, ranging from safety education to volunteer opportunities. The Special Services Division uses both certified law enforcement officers and teachers to inform the public about community-based programs. The division includes two full-time education specialists who visit all Knox County schools throughout the academic year. They instruct a curriculum that includes crime prevention, firearms safety, and bicycle and pedestrian safety. Certified officers provide Internet Safety and Business and Worship Center Crime Prevention seminars. The main components of the Special Services are detailed here .
The Support Services Division provides the public with records and reports relating to the Knox County Sheriff’s Office and all area law enforcement. The division handles local, state, and federal information relating to criminal and vehicle records, missing persons, and stolen property. In addition, Support Services provides support to all officers and employees of the department through accurate record keeping. Within Support Services are Records, LEIDS (Law Enforcement Information Division), and Teleserve. Teleserve makes various non-emergency crime reports and assists the public 24 hours a day, seven days a week. LEIDS, also in operation at all times, is responsible for entering missing persons and stolen articles into NCIC. To contact our Support Services Division, please call 865-215-2243.
The Knox County Sheriff’s Office Regional Training Academy has the honor of producing some of the best law enforcement officers in the state through the Basic Police School. The school is a five-week program with three weeks of on-the-job training offered once a year. Anyone working full-time in a law enforcement agency is eligible for the school. Upon completion of the necessary course work, the graduate is eligible for POST (Peace Officer Standard Training) certification.
The Training Division maintains its own professional training staff as well as hosting a number of specialized training schools every year such as the FBI, Homeland Security, and NRA.
Each certified officer is mandated by the State of Tennessee to receive 40 hours of in-service training every year to maintain certification. The Training Division conducts in-service training for Sheriff’s Office certified officers, court security officers, and school police officers. It also conducts specialized training for KCSO’s SWAT Team, Citizen’s Academy, SCAN (Senior Citizen Awareness Network) volunteers, Tracking Team, and the Honor Guard.
Training also maintains a-state-of-the art indoor firing range for year-round firearms training and qualification, and an outdoor range for combat courses. It also offers firearms and a driving simulator for judgmental shooting and pursuit driving tactics.
Criminal Warrants is responsible for serving warrants and arresting wanted persons inside Knox County. The unit deals with extradition of fugitives from other states to stand trial in Knoxville and also returns prisoners from other counties within the state to face local charges.
Civil Warrants serves all civil papers issued by the courts such as subpoenas, lawsuits, landlord/tenant actions, forced evictions, orders of protection, writs of possession, wage garnishments and levies.