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Springhill police chief orders curfew for juveniles due to coronavirus

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SPRINGHILL, La. (KTAL/KMSS) – The police chief of Springhill, Louisiana has set a curfew for anyone under the age of 17 in response to students being out of school becuase of the coronavirus, citing an increase in property crimes involving juveniles and the expectation that they’ll see more.

“With the situation of the Coronavirus (Covid-19) and with the emergency order issued by Governor Edwards earlier this week, I am temporarily revising the City Ordinance as to the times that juveniles can be out,” Police Chief Will Lynd said in a statement released Thursday.

“There is currently in place an Ordinance where juveniles (anyone who has not reached the age of 17) cannot be out after 11pm Sunday through Thursday and out after 12 on Friday and Saturday. This is Ordinance 70-11 of the Springhill Code of Ordinances and can be found online at municode.com,” Lynd explained.

The new times will be from 9 p.m. through 5 a.m. on any given day “until this Coronavirus Emergency has passed.”

Juveniles can be out with their parents or other legal guardians, who are defined by Louisiana statute as any person who has legal authority of a minor child or juvenile. Lynd says they can still travel to and from work, “but cannot be out roaming the streets of the City of Springhill all hours of the night.”

“With Governor Edwards signing this emergency bill, Louisiana Law gives the chief law enforcement officer of a municipality the authority to preserve life and property. We have in recent days seen and expect to see an increase in vandalism, thefts, and other property crimes related to juveniles being out all hours of the day or night.”

Lynd notes that you can research the law that gives the chief law enforcement officer the authority to do this under LA. R.S. 14:329.6 and the penalties are described under 14:329.7 which carries a $500 fine and/or six months in jail.

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