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T.C.A. 40-2-103 provides: "No period during which the party charged conceals the fact of the crime, or during which the party charged was not usually and publicly resident within the state, is included in the period of limitation."
This is called a "tolling" statute, which means to suspend the running of the statute of limitations. The statute requires that the defendant must affirmatively conceal the fact that a crime was committed. It is not enough that the defendant merely goes about his or her life, and the crime is not discovered by law enforcement. There must be acts by the defendant separate from the crime itself, which operate to conceal the crime's existence -- and thereby toll the statute of limitations.
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