The Youth Activities Committee in Arlington, Texas recently decided not to enact a curfew after reviewing police statistics that did not show an increase in juvenile crime. Every six months, the local police chief presents the statistics, which track the number of crimes committed by teenagers and against teenagers after midnight.
In the Spring of 1998, the D.C. Circuit Court ruled that the Washington, DC curfew, which was passed in the summer of 1995, was unconstitutional. The District of Columbia appealed the ruling and the case is now before the U.S. Court of Appeals.
We found an incredible curfew article that specifically points out that curfews are only constitutional if they allow people to exercise their First Amendment rights at any time. The courts routinely strike down city curfews but cities usually respond by amending them with a FIRST AMENDMENT EXCEPTION to make them constitutional.
I thought that this curfew issue might be of interest to the home-ed and sep-school lists. Basically, there are several cities and counties (including mine!) which are passing or have passed curfew laws for minors, including daytime curfews. These laws essentially criminalize the act of being in public.
A recent court case in Philadelphia confirmed your right to express your political opinions at any time, despite your local curfew. Numerous teenagers were arrested and then acquitted after they violated a public park’s curfew by camping out overnight to bring attention to the plight of the homeless.
The curfew in Wash. DC was ruled unconstitutional by the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia. The appeals court upheld a U.S. District Court ruling that said the city’s nighttime curfew unconstitutionally restricted freedom of movement. The curfew was never put into force due to court challenges.
The Supreme Court refused to consider a case against a Charlottesville, Virginia curfew and thereby allowed it to remain in effect. The curfew was midnight to 5 a.m. weekdays and 1 a.m. to 5 a.m. on Saturdays and Sundays — for anyone under 17.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: San Diego, CA — On Friday, July 11, 1997, at 10 p.m., citizens will rally against the San Diego juvenile curfew. Rallies will be held every night, from 10 p.m. to Midnight, at Mission Bay Park, across from the roller coaster, until the City Council of San Diego repeals the curfew law. […]