One Story at a Time

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Posted: 2017-1-19

Criminal Court Clerk Mike Hammond, is pleased to announce that the recently implemented Knox County Criminal Court Community Service Program, a first of its kind for the State of Tennessee, has its first Program graduate.  The Program currently has 17 participants (Please see story below).

One Story at a Time

In the beginning of October 2016, Knox County launched the Knox County Criminal Court Community Service Program that provides an opportunity for indigent individuals to repay their court cost debt by performing needed community service in one of three areas. The program is designed to help people who can truly not pay back their court fees, but can participate in valuable community service. After only two and a half months, the Program completed its intention, which is to help individuals who then help the community.

KARM, one of the Program Partner organizations, had the opportunity to work with the first graduate from the community service program- Elizabeth White. Mrs. White was assigned community service with KARM where she performed a total of 64 hours at the KARM Store located on Hall of Fame Drive.  Mrs. White worked off her costs. She now owes zero court costs thanks to the community service program.

Mrs. White had nothing but good things to say about performing her community service at the KARM Store. She said, “The team of employees was very helpful, welcoming, made me feel comfortable, and was truly a close knit family. I am grateful for the community service program because it would have been a true hardship on my family if I had to pay back the court costs.” Mrs. White also talked about how it was very special to have bible studies while at KARM.

The community service program made a difference in Mrs. White’s life and she was able to give back to the community by performing valuable services. The KARM Store truly enjoyed working with Mrs. White. Jerry Skelton, the Processing Manger for the KARM Store located on Hall of Fame Drive, said, “It was a wonderful experience that my team and I had with the volunteer. We felt that her time here fostered a sense of community both for her as well as my team. Thank you for allowing us to participate in this program.”

It is exciting that the Knox County Criminal Court Community Service Program has its first graduate and that KARM played a part in it. There are currently two more participants who are performing their community service at the KARM Stores. KARM has reported they feel it is an honor to be a partner with the new community service program and believe there is more success to come. We are looking forward to more graduates, for more lives to be changed, and for our next story.

Interested parties who feel they may qualify for the Program may contact either the Criminal Court or Criminal General Sessions Court front counters.  Designated Community Service Program Deputy Clerks on are hand to assist applicants with completing their Affidavit of Indigence Form and are available to answer any questions applicants may have.  Please keep in mind the Program is voluntary and only serious and interested parties should apply.  All required forms and additional Program information is located under the General Information tab at www.knoxcounty.org/criminalcourt/.