HOUSTON – The Houston Police Department is cracking down on juvenile crime and parents of kids caught out after curfew will be fined.
Houston has a weeknight curfew of 11 p.m., and midnight on weekends. While parents are responsible for any fines imposed by the court for curfew violation, any juvenile who violates the city’s ordinance three times can see their parent fined up to $300 and three days in jail.
“Parents are always responsible for the actions of their kids,” said Houston Police Chief Billy Voyles. “Parents who don’t keep up with their kids and let them violate curfew can be charged and we are going to push to make it stick.”
Voyles said first-time violators will be brought to the police department and their parents called to come pick them up.
The crackdown is the result of a number of cases of petty theft and vandalism reported around town and Voyles said juveniles riding in automobiles can also be stopped and detained.
“There is no need for a kid to be walking or riding the streets of Houston after curfew,” said Voyles. “We’ve had a little bit of a problem and we hope this will take care of it. And school will be starting soon and kids need to get into a routine of being home early and getting their sleep.”
Voyles urged the community to call police at 456-5065 or simply dial 911 if they spot kids out after curfew in their neighborhood.
“We know it’s summertime and kids want to have a little fun,” said Voyles. “We’re not trying to harrass anyone and if people would do right we probably wouldn’t be doing this.”
Voyles said the department has gotten tough on curfews before and seen a dramatic drop in vandalism and minor crimes.
“This is the only warning anyone will get,” said Voyles. “If we catch kids out after curfew we will be holding parents responsible.”