(Horn Lake, MS) Just a week after four Horn Lake teenagers allegedly shot a man to death in a drug deal gone bad, the city’s board of alderman say no more teens out after 10 p.m. or before 6 a.m. every day of the week.
“Does someone under the age of 18 need to be out on the streets after 10 o’clock at night? The answer is no,” said Police Chief Darryl Whaley.
Chief Whaley said last week’s murder doesn’t have anything to do with the move to make the city’s curfew an hour earlier.
There is also a curfew during school hours to prevent kids from roaming the town when they should be in class.
“The aldermen just heard from some of their constituents about kids being out on the streets late and looked at it, and gave it some consideration,” said Whaley.
Chief Whaley says if someone appears to be under 18, they will be stopped and questioned. Both the teen and parent could have to go to court and face a fine or jail time.
Horn Lake’s aldermen did add some exemptions to the curfew.
The board says if a teen is going to or from a school or church event, coming home from work, or if they’re with their parents, they can be out after the curfew begins.
Aldermen say they believe it will cut down on gang activity and youth crimes, but Isaac Scott thinks it will be a way for police to target people.
“It’s up to the police officers discretion as to whether they can abuse it or not,” said Scott.
But Scott also said a curfew could deter crimes, like the capital murder last week that landed two teens in jail.
“It all depends on what you’re doing. It’s also like I said up to the police and the community,” said Scott.
Neighboring Southaven changed its teen curfew just a few months ago from 11 p.m. to 6 a.m. Sunday through Thursday, and midnight to 6 a.m. on Friday and Saturday.