City re-adopts juvenile curfew - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

City re-adopts juvenile curfew

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by Larry Lemmons
NewsChannel 10

Amarillo, Texas - Local law enforcement believes the city is safer without kids on the street after midnight.

So the City of Amarillo has voted on a first reading to re-adopt a juvenile curfew.

Police say statistics show a reduction of juvenile arrests after midnight and say that's a reason to re-adopt the curfew.

There were nearly seventy fewer juvenile arrests made in 2009 compared to the year before.

Police say that's an indication the curfew is working.  APD Police Chief Robert Taylor says, "These that are arrested, they're not getting into further trouble. Those that are kids are getting sent home. They're not getting into further trouble so just keeping them off the streets is a good thing."

And that's why the City Commission wants to re-adopt it.  City Commissioner, Dr. Brian Eades says, "The police have actually documented numerous cases of situations that they have come upon where it was very clear there was about to be a problem, whether it was going to be graffiti or juvenile delinquency in the form of damage. And so we need to do all we can to help these young people to be where they need to be when they need to be there."

Police also say the curfew protects good kids who might be tempted by peer pressure to stay out late at night only to be victimized. "And if our other 15 or 16 year olds are home in bed or at least home in the house, then they can't be a victim," says Corporal Jerry Neufeld of the Amarillo Police Department.

State law requires a curfew to be reviewed and readopted every three years.

The Commission also agreed to apply for a grant for a new K-9 unit.  Getting another K-9 dog will allow APD to employ three such units.