UPDATE: Council tables discussion of daytime curfew

The vote won’t come until October 13th but last night several Cache County Councilmembers expressed skepticism about a proposed daytime curfew ordinance. Cache County Sheriffs Lt. Chad Jensen said he’s concerned about the crime that seems to occur when kids are on the street during school hours. Councilmembers Gordon Zilles and Cory Yeates both said this is a parent problem and a school problem, not a law enforcement problem. Jon White said he doesn’t think it would solve the problem. “Well, if a kid’s up on Sky View Hill he’s trespassing,” Yeates said. “He’s already broke the law. They can arrest him right there. They can cite him right then and there. Giving him a ticket for truancy is kind of an added bonus and it gives them another incentive, I guess, to grab the kids.” Yeates also said he feels law enforcement officers should have better things to do with their time. Council chairman Craig Peterson said he’s convinced that it is needed as a tool to cut truancy and reduce juvenile crime. “Police aren’t out there getting every kid off the street, but if they need to get them off the street now they have a vehicle,” Peterson said at Tuesday’s council meeting. Peterson also said that it’s important to recognize all those who are recommending the daytime curfew. “Think about this, the sheriff’s department says we need this,” he said. “The county attorney says we need this. The court system says we need this. The school system says we need this. Logan City Police department says, ‘we have this and it works great.’ That matters to me.” Cache County Sheriffs Sgt. Mitch Frost and others said the daytime curfew law is working great in other local cities, including Logan, Smithfield, North Logan and Richmond. Sgt. Frost said it focuses on “problem kids.” Logan Police Lt. Brett Randall said since Logan implemented its curfew ordinance nine years ago, crime in schools has dropped by 60 percent. The ordinance says the fine for being truant could be as high as $50 but those who do not have the money could perform community service.

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