Police Set For Curfew Crackdown

June 22, 2007
Reported By: Lee Peck

Do you know where your child is? Not knowing could cost you money and jail time. As KPLC's Lee Peck reports, Lake Charles Police are set to crack down on curfew violators and their parents.

Current law says anyone 16 years or under should be off the streets between 11 p.m. and 5 a.m. on weekdays and midnight and 5 a.m. on weekends. However, Lake Charles Police say within the last two months they have been picking up more and more juveniles out way past curfew.

"There is no reason for somebody 16 years old or under to be out after midnight -- nothing good can come of that," said Lake Charles Police Chief Don Dixon.

Chief Dixon says Friday morning around 2 a.m. a 16-year-old girl and 14 year-old boy were caught burglarizing a business on Hodges Street. He says other incidents involving juveniles have been met with extreme violence.

"The last one was kind of the last straw. It was on Ryan Street on a Tuesday night, which they totally shut down Ryan Street. And our officers get there and were dealing with predominately juveniles. The juveniles began swinging at our officers... And I said that's enough," said Dixon.

Starting next week, police will begin targeting the parents of juveniles caught out after hours. Dixon says if they pick up your child, you can expect a knock at the door and a warning.

"The first time is kind of a get out of jail free card. We're going to tell the parents, advise them of the curfew statute, make a record that they've been advised, and next time they are going to get a ticket," said Dixon.

Violating the curfew law comes with a fine of up to 100 dollars, not including court costs. You can also receive up to 30 days in jail.