Agricultural Crime Unit Adds Three Special Agents
NASHVILLE – Tennessee Commissioner of Agriculture Charlie Hatcher, D.V.M. has commissioned three new Agricultural Crime Unit (ACU) Special Agents, bringing the unit to full staffing of nine special agents and one Special Agent in Charge.
The Tennessee Department of Agriculture’s (TDA) ACU is a team of law enforcement officers charged with investigating and enforcing state laws related to agriculture, forestry, animal health, and agribusinesses in Tennessee. Additionally, ACU is the chief agency responsible for investigation of suspected wildland arson.
“ACU Special Agents work in the field every day to investigate and protect agricultural and forestry operations,” Hatcher said. “Our agents are stationed throughout Tennessee to investigate crimes such as livestock and equipment theft, livestock cruelty, and rural fire threats. We are pleased to add these three seasoned law enforcement agents to our team, equipping us to serve citizens more efficiently and timely.”
Marvin Braden brings 26 years of experience in law enforcement from the Knox and Grainger County Sheriff Departments and was a former Knox County Law Enforcement Officer of the Year, Grainger County Employee of the Year, and has served as the Mayor of Blaine, Tenn. He is a Certified Fire Investigator and has worked numerous livestock welfare cases with TDA. Braden will serve TDA in Knox County and surrounding counties.
Clint Brookshire comes to TDA with 20 years of experience in law enforcement with the Monroe County Sheriff’s Department. He served as a K-9 handler for the last 10 years and worked part-time for TDA’s Division of Forestry for 8 years as a wildland firefighter. Brookshire volunteers for the Notchey Creek Volunteer Fire Department and Monroe County Rescue Squad. He will serve TDA in Hamblen County and lower East Tennessee.
Cheshier Crihfield brings seven years of experience in law enforcement from the Lauderdale County Sheriff’s Department and other law enforcement qualifications from previous training. He is also active in training dogs and birds of prey that he uses in the sport of falconry and is a licensed drone operator. Crihfield is working towards a bachelor's degree in Agricultural Business from the University of Tennessee-Martin. He will serve TDA in Shelby County and lower West Tennessee.
Since July 1, 2023, ACU has investigated 395 cases and offenses statewide. More than half of the 85 cases investigated in October were livestock cruelty cases. Other farm crimes and criminal activity on state forest lands make up the case load. Learn more at www.tn.gov/agriculture/consumers/ag-crime-unit.
Pictured - front: Agricultural Crime Unit Special Agent in Charge Greg Whitehead, Agriculture Commissioner Charlie Hatcher, D.V.M, Special Agent Clint Brookshire Special Agent Cheshier Crihfield, Special Agent Marvin Braden, and TDA General Counsel Jay Miller.
Back: ACU Special Agents Chris Magee, Shane Keatts, Morris Rogers, Raymond Raper, and Michael Whaley.