About the Veterans Court

Learn more about why we exist and how we serve Nashville veterans.

Who We Are

The Davidson County Veterans Court was established with a grant from the U.S. Department of Justice through the Tennessee Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services in October 2014.

 

Beginning in 2008 with the first dedicated Veterans Court in Buffalo, New York, Veterans Courts have been established nationwide with a remarkable record of success in returning veterans in distress to a productive life as full participants in society.

 

Veterans Courts embody the concept of restorative justice, involving the defendant in the treatment and rehabilitation process to address the causes of a crime that brought them to the court, rather than merely locking them away with no prospect to rehabilitate themselves.

Our veterans have given so much of themselves to protect our nation, but it sometimes comes at a cost.

1 in 5

Veterans Have Symptoms of Mental Health Disorders or Cognitive Impairment

1 in 6

Veterans Suffer from Substance Abuse Issues

22

Veterans Die Of Suicide Daily

But there’s hope…

88%

Success Rate of the Davidson County Veterans Court

We’re committed to caring for our veterans so they can return to a productive life as full participants in society.

Make a Donation

The Davidson County Mental Health and Veterans Court Assistance Foundation was created in 2014 to provide financial and volunteer support to the work of the Veterans and Mental Health Courts in Nashville. The Foundation is a federally recognized 501-c3 charitable organization, and contributions to the foundation are tax deductible.

 

Since its creation, the foundation has expanded the reach of service to include counseling and therapy, housing assistance, subsidizing oral and dental health, and numerous other initiatives to assist the populations we serve. You can be a part of helping the court with our mission as a volunteer, a mentor, or with a financial contribution.

Veterans Court Foundation Event Featuring a Special Performance by Nashville Recording Artists the War Hippies

Sponsorship Levels:
  • Presenting Sponsor $2,000: Includes 8 tickets, prominent recognition on event video board signage and communications.
  • Gold Level Sponsor $1,500: Includes 6 tickets, recognition on event signage and communications.
  • Silver Level Sponsor $500: Includes 4 tickets, recognition on event signage and communications.
  • Bronze Level Sponsor $250: Includes 1 ticket, recognition on event signage and communications.

Ticket to Event $100: Includes 1 ticket to the event.

For any inquiries about the event, please contact Spencer Bowers at 731-441-8267

Join Kroger’s Community Rewards

The Kroger Community Rewards program allows customers to select a community organization to receive points earned through everyday grocery purchases. It doesn’t take away from personal points earned but simply allows your purchases to ALSO earn points for the Foundation.

Select the Davidson County Mental Health and Veterans Court Assistance Foundation as the recipient of your Kroger Community Rewards points on your online account, and start earning today!

 

How to select the foundation to receive your support:

  • Go to krogercommunityrewards.com.
  • Log in if you already have an account associated with your Kroger Plus card.  If not, simply create an account.
  • Once logged in, click “Community” and then “Community Rewards.”
  • Click “Enroll Now.”
  • Input or confirm your information.
  • Enter our Organization Number (18634) or our name, “Davidson County Mental Health and Veterans Court,” then select it from the list and click on “Enroll.”
  • To verify that you enrolled correctly, scroll down and look for our name listed under “Community Rewards” at the bottom of the page.
  • Now start shopping! Make sure to swipe your card each time!

Meet Our Board

We are honored to have respected and accomplished members of the Nashville community serving on the Foundation Board:

Robert D. Tuke, USMC (Ret.)

President

The Honorable Melissa Blackburn

Davidson County Mental Health Court

Ms. Michele Buc, MSC

Nashville State University

The Honorable Dan Eisenstein

Former Judge
Davidson County Mental Health Court

Mr. Bill Freeman

Freeman Webb Company

Theodora Pinnock, M.D.

Meharry Medical College

The Honorable Deborah Taylor-Tate

Former Director
Tennessee Administrative Office of the Courts

Ms. Judith Tackett

Tackett Consulting LLC

Mr. Paul Tennisson

Senior Associate Attorney at Tennisson Firm

Ms. Mary Littleton

Accurate Mortgage Group

Brig. Gen.Eden Murrie, MBA (Ret.)

Chief Executive Officer
Operation Stand Down Tennessee
US Air Force Veteran

* As a member of the Judiciary, Judge Blackburn is prohibited from direct involvement with soliciting or accepting donations to the Foundation (Rule 10, Tennessee Code of Judicial Conduct). Questions concerning compliance with Tennessee law may be directed to NashvilleVetsCourt@gmail.com.

Frequently Asked Questions

Veterans Treatment Courts (VTC) began in Buffalo, NY, in 2008 to design a specific program for soldiers and veterans involved in the judicial system.

 

VTCs are based on successful Drug and Mental Health Court programs. Participants may have honorable discharges, other than honorable or dishonorable, and have substance abuse and/or mental health issues.  The Judge and staff of the VTC design a plan for recovery and guide Veterans toward resources to improve their mental, physical, emotional, and financial situation.

 

Successful graduates of the court program may be eligible to have their charges dismissed or reduced and have their criminal record expunged. The VTC staff is committed to standing with Veterans as they work to reassert control over their lives.

Your attorney may request that the court evaluate you for consideration to be accepted in the VTC program. If you are eligible to apply, they will explain program requirements and how your charges will possibly be handled upon completion. Attorneys must complete an application to include specific documents for their clients to be considered. 

Attorneys can access the program requirements and application here.

VTC has no associated costs.  Any pending fines or court costs related to charges are not a part of the VTC.
Participants of the VTC program will be placed into probationary status while in the program rather than sent to jail. The VTC provides the structure and responsibility many veterans struggle without as they return to civilian life. VTC requires full commitment and accountability from the veteran. Veterans in the VTC program will have access to resources to assist them in dealing with emotional issues, physical problems, and financial assistance. Once the program is successfully completed, the charges you entered will be addressed and may be reduced or dismissed depending on the circumstances.

The Davidson County Veterans Court is located in Courtroom 3-B of the Justice A.A. Birch Courthouse at 408 2nd Avenue North, Nashville 37219. Veterans meet with VTC staff in Suite 100 of the Ben West Building next door to the courthouse. The court docket takes place every Monday at 1:00 p.m. You can reach the VTC at 615.862.8320.

See how we can help today

The Davidson County Veterans Court is committed to helping veterans reclaim their lives. Contact us today to see how we can help you or someone you know.