Domestic Violence

Criminal Investigations Division
Domestic Violence Unit

What is Domestic Violence?

Domestic Violence is a pattern of behavior, the goal of which is to establish one partner as the person with the power and the control in the relationship. Abuse can manifest itself in the following four ways:

  • Physical Abuse
  • Sexual Abuse
  • Emotional Abuse
  • Financial Abuse

Almost 40% of all 911 calls in Shelby County involve domestic violence and arrests average about 10 a day. Nationally, over 95% of victims are women. In fact, domestic violence is the number one health issue for women, exceeding rapes, muggings, and auto accidents combined. It accounts for 20% of all medical visits for women and 25% of emergency room visits.

In 80% of cases, children witness the abuse. In about a third of these cases, the children are also abused. Many of these children grow up to be victims or abusers.

Domestic violence has a huge impact not just on victims but also on the penal, legal and medical systems of our community. That's why the Collierville Police Department has created a special unit to address domestic violence. A primary objective is to provide the tools and information necessary to help victims escape abusive situations by prosecuting their abusers.

Prosecuting the Violent Offender

Reporting and prosecuting someone you live with is not easy. But it is necessary to end the abuse. Here are some answers to victim's most common questions.

Q. What happens after someone is arrested for domestic violence?

A. The person will be brought before a judge who will explain the defendant's legal rights. The court will sign an order granting bail and the conditions of the defendant's release. The judge may order the defendant to have no contact with the victim. This order remains in effect until the judge lifts the order or until the case against the defendant is dismissed. Victims cannot change the court order.

Q. Who can drop charges?

A. Victims cannot drop charges. Domestic violence charges are brought and presented by the State of Tennessee. Only the prosecutor's office or the judge may drop the charges. Charges are brought not only to protect current victims, but also to protect possible future victims. Unless the abuser receives counseling, no matter how sincere or sorry he/she is, the violent behavior may not stop.

Q. What happens to a person convicted of domestic violence?

A. The maximum jail penalty is 11 months and 29 days. The actual sentence will depend on the facts of the case and any prior criminal record. Regardless of any jail time imposed, the defendant will generally be required to participate in a domestic violence counseling program and depending upon the facts of each case may be required to participate in evaluation and treatment for alcohol and or drug abuse.

Q. He/She has been put on probation and he/she is in treatment, but the abuse continues. What can I do?

A. If the abuser is on probation, you should report any new incident of violence to the Collierville Police Department. New charges can be filed and the probation can be revoked, putting the offender in jail. If you are afraid to call from home, use a friend's phone or call from work to discuss the situation with an officer.

Q. All I want is to keep the offender away from me. How can I do that?

A. Citizens Dispute, at 545-2520, can help you prepare a request for an Order of Protection. A judge issues this order and it forbids the abuser to bother you. If the offender violates the order, jail penalties are enforced. If you have filed for divorce, you should seek the order of protection in civil court.

Q. What if I move or go to a shelter?

A. If you have filed a domestic violence complaint, it is critical that you notify the Collierville Police Department at 901-853-3207.

Q. Where is court held?

A. Court is held at the Collierville Police Department Complex at 156 N. Rowlett. For additional information about the court, please call the Court Clerk's Office at 901-457-2580.

Q. What could I do to help in my community?

A. The Family Violence Council of Collierville (FVCC) is an outreach program for Domestic Violence crimes and to educate the Collierville Community about Domestic Violence and available resources. The organization meetings are held the first Monday of every month at 6:00 pm at Collierville Town Library. Call 901-870-2990 for more information. This is the hotline number for the FVCC and available 24 hours a day. FVCC is a non-profit organization. Membership is open to anyone who is willing to support programs that aid in the prevention of family violence in the Collierville Community. All volunteers are welcome to participate in the solicitation of support from personal connections in the community and join us for meetings and events.

FVCC welcomes the donation of professional services to directly benefit the victims of domestic violence, such as

  • Medical Treatment
  • Counseling
  • Legal Services

All monetary donations made to FVCC are used to support family violence programs and services in the community. If you wish to donate to the Family Violence Council of Collierville, please send it to:

The Family Violence Council of Collierville
PMB #107
1160 W. Poplar Ave.
Collierville TN. 38017

For more information about Collierville Police Domestic Violence Unit and the Family Violence Council of Collierville, please contact Detective Jonathan Watts at (901)457-2523.

Support in the Community

Help with getting protective orders
Citizen's Dispute
901-545-2520

Collierville Police Department Domestic Violence Unit
901-457-2530

Samaritan Counseling Services (located at Collierville United Methodist Church)
901-729-3900 (Primary)
901-853-8383 (Secondary)

For a safe place to stay
YWCA Abused Women's Service
901-725-5861

YWCA Crisis Line
901-725-4277

Help for victims and their children
Victim's Assistance Center
901-545-4357

Exchange Club
901-276-2200

To report violations of probation or court orders or for information about cases pending in Collierville
Collierville Police Department
901-457-2530

For other help with felony cases
Shelby County Victim/Witness Unit
901-545-5164

Court date information for Collierville
Collierville City Court
901-457-2580

Divorce assistance for those who cannot afford legal counsel
Memphis Area Legal Service
901-523-8822

To file for child support or child support enforcement
Child Support, Juvenile Court
901-405-8453

To volunteer and/or support community outreach
The Family Violence Council of Collierville
901-854-0014

VICTIM/WITNESS SERVICE PROVIDER

Adult Protective Services
901-320-7220

Attorney General's Office (District), Victim/Witness Unit
201 Poplar Ave. Suite 301
Memphis, Tn. 38103
(901) 545-5900 Fax (901) 545-3939
James Challen Executive Administrative Assistant
Ken Blackburn Director, Victim/Witness Unit

Victim Advocacy. Court Support/Parole Hearing Support, Victims Compensation Applications, Court Information

Child Advocacy Center
1085 Poplar Ave.
Memphis, Tn. 38105
(901) 525-2377 Fax (901) 526-6088
Vanessa Jones

Citizens Dispute
201 Poplar Ave., Suite 801
Memphis, Tn. 38103
(901) 545-2520 Fax (901) 545-4551
Janice Mosley Administrator
Phyllis Quarin Program Administrative Specialist

Domestic Related Mediations, Misdemeanor Warrants, Order of Protection Services, Referral to Appropriate Agency
Collierville Police Department
156 N. Rowlett
Collierville, Tn. 38017
(901) 457-2520 Fax (901) 457-2525
Lt. Tom Beard - Investigations Supervisor
Detective Jonathan Watts -  Domestic Violence Unit Coordinator

Victim Advocacy, Court Support and Information, Referral to Appropriate Agency

Commission on Missing and Exploited Children
616 Adams Ave.
Memphis, Tn. 38105
(901) 528-8441 Fax (901) 575-8856

Teen Drug Hotline (901) 575-DRUG (3784)
Sgt. Lynn Edwards Executive Director

Substance Abuse Testing, Counseling, Violence and Truancy Prevention, Child Safety and ID Services, Safety in Cyber Space
Memphis Child Advocacy Center
1085 Poplar Ave.
P.O. Box 42203
Memphis, Tn. 38174-2203
(901) 525-2377
Nancy Williams Executive Director

Child Abuse Services, Crisis Intervention, Individual and Group Counseling, Victim Advocacy, Victim's Compensation
Memphis Sexual Assault Resources Center
2675 Union Ext.
Memphis, Tn. 38112
(901)327-0233
Judy Coffey Coordinator

Rape Crisis Services, Forensic Exams, Counseling, Legal Advocacy, Court Support, individual and Group Counseling
Memphis and Shelby County Juvenile Court
616 Adams Ave.
Memphis, Tn. 38105
(901) 528-8529
Barry Mitchell Chief Probation Officer

Child Support Services, Juvenile Counseling, Referral to Appropriate Agency, Volunteer Opportunities, Legal Advocacy, Educational Activities, Anonymous Drug Testing, Abuse and neglect Services

Mental Health Centers Midtown (901) 577-1800

Emergency Mobile Crisis (901) 577-9400

Suicide Crisis Hotline (901) 274-7477

Southwest Mental Health (901) 259-1920

Southeast Mental Health (901) 369-1480 or (901) 369-1400

Patient Mental Health, Emergency Home Assessment, Referral to Appropriate Agency, Emergency Commitment, Pre- Screening

Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD)
3340 Poplar Ave.
Memphis, Tn. 38111
(901) 458-4800

Catharine White Victim Advocate
Red Ribbon Services, Court Advocacy
State of Tennessee Board of Paroles
3358 S. Third
Memphis, Tn. 38109
(901) 344-5071
(901) 543-7361