Curfew ordinance up for debate

Curfew ordinance up for debate

AMARILLO, TX (KFDA) - An ordinance that is meant to keep Amarillo teenagers safe after dark, is expiring.

Teens 16 and younger are not allowed to walk the streets of Amarillo after midnight, but the teen curfew is almost up and city leaders will have to decide whether to extend it.

The old saying of "nothing good happens after midnight", is one of the main reasons why the teen curfew was put in place.

"There's not much good that a 15 or 16-year-old is going to get involved in at 2 in the morning," said Corporal Jerry Neufeld with the Amarillo Police Department.

The curfew was introduced in 1995 and has been renewed every three years since. Chief Robert Taylor with the APD will present a report with teen arrest and citations from last year to council members. Neufeld says no matter what the data shows, the curfew needs to stay.

"If we're keeping the vast majority of these good kids at home between midnight and 6 a.m., it takes away the chance of them becoming a victim," said Neufeld.

Almost all Facebook comments on this topic agreed that the curfew should stay in place. However, many added that APD needs to enforce it stricter and parents need to add their own curfew to ensure children safety.

"As a parent, there is absolutely no reason I would want my 12, 13, 14-year-old out running around the streets of Amarillo 2, 3, 4 o' clock in the morning," said Neufeld.

City council members will decide if the curfew will be extended, amended, or abolished. The city is looking for public comment on the curfew. If you would like your voice to be heard, the discussion will be during the regular city council meeting, starting at 5 p.m. on Tuesday.

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