Posted: Oct 26, 2012 5:37 PM by Rachel Cole - email@example.com
Updated: Oct 26, 2012 6:52 PM
JIM WELLS -- Corpus Christi has had a curfew for kids under 17-years old for more than two decades. Teens in Jim Wells County now have similar restrictions. The county commissioners approved a new curfew ordinance Friday. Some parents who agree with the new rules said nothing good happens after dark.
"Drinking, trouble and crime," parents said are some of the things they believe go on late in the night. Parents like Paula Guartuche said, "There's too many kids that stay out later than they should be."
Others agree that the new rule is a good way to restrict minors from making mistakes and bad choices. "Children need to be at home after midnight if they're under 18," Pete Fonseca, a grandfather of three said.
The new ordinance approved by commissioners states children 17 and under must be inside from midnight to 6 a.m. Officials said this is an effort to keep kids out of trouble and cut down crime. Any violation of this curfew comes with a hefty fine up to $500.
"That is kind of pricey but I'd rather pay $500 than lose my child," Henry Barrajas said. "I wouldn't want to pay the $500," Paula added.
Even kids who now have to follow the rule said they don't have that kind of cash. "I would not want to be out that late. I don't want to pay$500," 12-year-old Jesse said. He thinks curfews are pretty reasonable. "Well curfew's are pretty fair to me, I mean we go to bed at 9 or 10, we don't have to stay up late."
Parents said, they hope the curfew will eliminate bad behavior and criminal activity in the county. "The sheriff's department took that step to avoid that before it gets worse," Barrajas said.
Officials said the ordinance is modeled after the City of Alice. It includes exceptions for minors who may have been out of town for a school or athletic event. Overall, the county is planning to monitor minors more closely.
There will be a 90 day grace period, for the public to get used to the new rule and for the sheriff's department to familiarize with exceptions that can be made for minors out past curfew.
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