By Deborah Bailey,
Prince George’s County Executive Angela Alsobrooks has announced a youth curfew for Prince George’s County, following a deadly Labor Day weekend and one of the deadliest months for the county in years.
On Sept. 5, Prince George’s County implemented a curfew for those under 17 years old from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. Sunday through Thursday. On Friday and Saturday, the curfew is in effect from 11:59 p.m. to 5 a.m, unless the minor is accompanied by an adult. Curfews will be enforced with fines.
“Many of you in the community have asked –rightly so– what I am doing to ‘address the rise in violent crime that we see in our county,’” Alsobrooks said.
“August was the deadliest month in Prince George’s County history,” Alsobrooks added. “Each year we are having more carjackings and we are arresting more juveniles.”
Prince George’s County experienced 24 violent deaths investigated by police in August and an accompanying rise in violent crime by repeat offenders. County police have arrested 430 arrests of juveniles this year — close to double the number arrested in 2021.
“These are children committing these crimes. Armed and dangerous children. At this point, these kids don’t just need a hug, they need to be held accountable,” Alsobrooks continued.
“I know it’s not a popular thing to say, but it’s a fair question: Where are their parents? Where are the aunties, where are the uncles and other family members who are responsible for them?”
Parents can be fined up to $250 for repeat violations by their children. Children who do not adhere to the curfew can be referred to the Department of Social Services. “If a parent doesn’t respond or fails to respond, their child can be handed over to social services,” Alsobrooks said.
A youth curfew was enforced previously in the county in 1955. Alsobrooks said that it is time to bring the curfew back.
“We need family members to step up and do their part,” she said.
Alsobrooks also pushed for action from the Department of Juvenile Services, which handles youth involved in the justice system, as well as prosecutors and the court system.
The county executive said she is seeking an emergency meeting with the Department of Juvenile Services and will seek answers from officials in the court system to understand “how these kids are being held accountable.”
She also called on the state’s attorney office and courts and police department to release data on arrests and dispositions of cases, saying police are continuing to arrest and re-arrest repeat offenders –both adults and juveniles.
“Where are the parents of kids who are out carjacking at three and four in the morning?” Alsobrooks asked. “People need to be held accountable.”
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