[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Trustees of the Village of Owego 8-1-1994 by L.L. No. 1-1994. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Peace and good order — See Ch. 153.
The Village Board of the Village of Owego, pursuant to the authority granted it under Article 4 of the Village Law and § 10 of the Municipal Home Rule Law of the State of New York, hereby enacts the following regulations.
This chapter shall be known and may be cited as the "Local Law Regulating the Presence and Conduct of Minors on Streets and Public Places."
When not inconsistent with the context, words used in the present tense include the future, words in the plural number include the singular number, and words in the singular number include the plural number. The word "shall" is always mandatory and not merely directory.
For the purposes of this chapter, the following terms, phrases, words and their derivations shall have the meanings given herein:
- Any person over the age of 21 who is in loco parentis to a juvenile.
- Any person, other than a parent, who has legal guardianship of a minor.
- Any person under the age of 17.
- The natural or adoptive parent of a minor.
- PUBLIC PLACE
- Any vacant lot, street, alley, highway, sidewalk, playground or place to which the general public has access and a right to resort for business, entertainment or other lawful purpose. A public place shall include but not be limited to any store, shop, restaurant, tavern, bowling alley, cafe, theater, drugstore, poolroom, shopping center and any other place devoted to amusement or open to the general public. It shall also include the front or immediate area of the above.
- The Village of Owego.
The Village Board has determined that large numbers of minors have been congregating on the sidewalks in the village after dark causing general disturbances to residents. In order to reduce juvenile crime, protect the children of this municipality and reinforce parental authority, it is necessary that a curfew be established to keep minors out of public areas after dark.
[Amended 11-3-2008 by L.L. No. 2-2008]
It shall be unlawful for any child under the age of 17 to remain, idle, wander, stroll or play in any public place, either on foot or to cruise about without a set destination in any vehicle, in, about or upon any public place in the Village between 10:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m.
The following shall constitute valid exceptions to the operation of the curfew:
At any time if the child is accompanied by his or her parent, custodian, legal guardian or other responsible person who is over the age of 21 and approved by the child's parent or legal guardian.
Until the hour of 12:00 midnight if the child is on an errand as directed by his or her parent, custodian or legal guardian.
If the child is legally employed, for the period from 1/2 hour before to 1/2 hour after work while going directly between his or her home and place of employment. This exception shall also apply if the child is in a public place during curfew hours in the course of his or her employment. To come under this exception, the child must be carrying a written statement from the employer attesting to the place and hours of employment.
If the child is coming directly home from a school activity or an activity of a religious or other voluntary association or a place of public entertainment, such as a movie, play or sporting event. This exception will apply for 1/2 hour after the completion of such event, but in no case beyond 12:00 midnight. If the event is not commercial in nature or does not have a fixed publicly known time at which it will end, the sponsoring organization must register the event with the Police Department at least 24 hours in advance informing it of the time such event is scheduled to begin, the place at which it shall be held, the time at which it shall end and the name of the sponsoring organization.
If the minor is exercising First Amendment rights protected by the Constitution, such as the free exercise of religion, speech or assembly, provided that the minor first has given notice to the Village of Owego Clerk-Treasurer by delivering a written communication signed by the minor and countersigned by a parent of the minor which specifies when, where, in what manner and for what First Amendment purpose the minor will be on the streets at night during the curfew period.
A police officer who has probable cause to believe that a child is in violation of this chapter shall take such child to the police station where the child's parents or guardian shall be immediately contacted. If after this contact there is still probable cause to believe that the child was violating this chapter, the child shall be held until the parent or guardian comes to take the child home. When the parent or guardian arrives, he or she must be given a copy of this chapter. If no parent or guardian has arrived within two hours, the child shall be turned over to the custody of the juvenile authorities until a parent or guardian can take custody of him or her.
In the case of a first violation by a minor, the police shall send the minor's parents or legal guardians written notice of the violation, warning them that further violations will result in imposition of the penalty provided for in this chapter. Upon a second or further violation, a fine of $25 or up to five hours of community service may be imposed by the Village Justice following a hearing. Any minor who violates this chapter more than three times shall be reported by the police to the juvenile authorities.