Nashville is starting a special court for victims of human trafficking.
The effort is the first of its kind in Tennessee and follows the model of drug and mental health courts in helping nonviolent offenders get help and avoid jail.
According to a news release, the trafficking court will allow victims who are defendants in criminal cases to have those cases dismissed and expunged upon completion of a program that includes drug treatment and counseling.
Nashville District Attorney Glenn Funk said in a statement the court will “restore those impacted by trafficking and prostitution to safe, law-abiding lives.”
The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation estimates there were over 100 minors trafficked for sex in Nashville in 2014 and a much greater number of adult victims.
The court begins operating Feb. 9.