[Adopted 6-7-2001 by Ord. No. 02-01]
The purposes of this article are as follows:
To protect juveniles and other citizens, residents and visitors to the Borough of Rockaway from the dangers of criminal and unlawful activity which may occur in the sidewalks, streets and other public places of the Borough during the late night and early morning hours;
To decrease the amount of criminal activity engaged in by juveniles;
To promote and enhance parental control over juveniles and encourage family unity;
To recognize the constitutional rights of juveniles and to establish standards which do not impinge upon those rights, and in particular to enable juveniles to continue to engage in lawful activities, while addressing the needs of the community and reduce or eliminate juvenile crime; and
To establish standards and policies to assist the Rockaway Borough Police in enforcing the measures established herein.
As used in this article, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- An organized pursuit supervised by one or more adults.
- An individual who is 18 or more years of age.
- ADULT EXTENDED FAMILY MEMBER
- A grandparent, brother, sister, stepbrother, stepsister, uncle, aunt, or first cousin who is 18 or more years of age and who is willing and available to care for the juvenile.
- COMMUNITY ORGANIZATION
- An administrative and functional association, society, group, or profit or not for profit corporation consisting of individuals linked by a common policy, social, economic, political or other interest.
- ERRAND INVOLVING MEDICAL EMERGENCY
- An event in which a juvenile is en route to or from rendering assistance to or locating or attempting to locate assistance for a person who has sustained what the juvenile reasonably believes to be a serious bodily injury or who is otherwise in a physical condition such that it reasonable appears to the juvenile that immediate action is required and that there is an urgent need for assistance or relief.
- EXTRACURRICULAR SCHOOL ACTIVITY
- An activity sponsored by, promoted by, supervised by or conducted under the auspices of a public or private school and supervised by one or more adults. Examples of extracurricular activities include, but are not limited to concerts, plays, art exhibits, dances and proms, sporting events and practice or rehearsal sessions, class trips, graduation ceremonies and related activities.
- A person, other than a parent, to whom legal custody of the juvenile has been given by court order or who is acting in the place of the parent and is responsible for the care and welfare of the juvenile.
- An individual who is under the age of 18 years.
- A person who is the natural or adoptive parent, stepparent or foster parent of the juvenile.
- PUBLIC PLACE
- Any place to which the public has access, including but not limited to a public street, road, thoroughfare, sidewalk, bridge, alley, plaza, park, recreation or shopping area, public transportation facility, vehicle used for public transportation, parking lot or any other public structure or area.
- RELIGIOUS ORGANIZATION
- An organization relating to, devoted to or promoting religious beliefs, activities or observances.
It shall be unlawful for a juvenile to be on any public street or in any public place between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m.
It shall be unlawful for any parent or guardian to allow a juvenile who is unaccompanied by the parent or guardian to be on any public street or in any public place between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m. It shall not be a violation of this article by the parent or guardian where a parent or guardian is unable to control the whereabouts and activities of a juvenile in his or her care, custody or control has contacted the Rockaway Borough Police and reported such juvenile as possibly appearing in locations and at times which would violate this article.
This article shall not apply to any juvenile who can establish that he or she is on a public street or in a public place between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m. where the juvenile is:
Accompanied by the juvenile's parents or guardian;
Engaged in or traveling to or from a business or occupation which the laws of the State of New Jersey authorize a juvenile to perform;
Engaged in an errand involving a medical emergency;
Attending an extracurricular school activity; or
Attending some other activity, cultural, educational or social event which is sponsored by a religious or community-based organization.
Violators of this article shall be required to perform community service and may be subject to a fine of up to $1,000. If both a juvenile and the juvenile's parent or guardian violate this article, they shall be required to perform community service together.
A police officer of the Borough, upon finding a suspected juvenile on the streets in apparent violation of this article, shall investigate to determine whether a violation has actually occurred.
A police officer finding a suspected juvenile in a public place in possible violation of this article shall request that the suspected juvenile produce identification or other documentation of age. In the absence of the production of convincing evidence such as birth certificate, a police officer on the street shall in the first instance use his or her best judgment to determine the age of the suspected juvenile.
Whenever any juvenile is engaged in conduct in violation of this article, the Rockaway Borough Police are hereby authorized and empowered to take such juvenile into custody in accordance with the laws of the State of New Jersey and the standards set forth herein.
An officer taking a juvenile into custody under this article shall inform the juvenile of the reason for such custody.
If it is necessary to take a juvenile into custody, the custody shall be temporary and shall not extend beyond the amount of time reasonably necessary to transport the juvenile to the juvenile's home, the police station or another destination authorized by law. In determining whether to transport a juvenile to the police station or the juvenile's home, the police officer shall consider factors, including but not limited to the distance to the juvenile's home, the availability of police personnel on duty to provide sufficient police protection to the Borough's residents during the time of transportation to the juvenile's home, and the presence, or lack thereof, of adequate adult supervision at the juvenile's home.
An officer releasing a juvenile into custody of a parent or guardian shall inform the parent or guardian of the reason for having taken the juvenile into custody and shall issue summonses to the juvenile and parent or guardian, if appropriate.
The officer may transport the juvenile to the police station, to the home of an adult extended family member, or any other place designated by the Chief of Police:
If the juvenile expresses fear or distress at the prospect of being returned to his or her home, which leads the officer to reasonably believe that there is a possibility that the juvenile is experiencing some type of child abuse or neglect in the home;
If it is not practical to transport the juvenile to his or her home; or
If there is no parent or guardian available to accept custody of the juvenile.
The officer releasing a juvenile into custody of an adult extended family member or a responsible adult shall inform the juvenile and the adult extended family member or responsible adult of the reason for taking the juvenile into custody.
The officer making original contact with the juvenile shall file a written report within 24 hours of such contact.
When a juvenile is taken into custody and transported to the police station, the officer shall promptly call the juvenile's parent or guardian. If such parent or guardian is not available, then the officer shall call an adult extended family member of the juvenile, if one is located within or in the vicinity of the Borough. When a parent cannot be located or has not appeared within a reasonable period of time to take charge of the juvenile, there is no adult extended family member with whom the juvenile has a relationship who is willing and available to care for the juvenile, or the juvenile fails or refuses to identify a parent, guardian or adult extended family member, and the appropriate information has been recorded, the police officer shall contact the Division of Youth and Family Services (DYFS) or other agency designated by the Chief of Police to make arrangements for temporary custody of the minor.
The Chief of Police shall have the authority to make such other necessary rules for enforcement of this article to assure that investigations and temporary custody of a minor are carried out in a constitutional and efficient manner.
This article and the need for it shall be reviewed periodically to determine the effectiveness and continuing need for this article. During the course of the review of this article, a report shall be prepared, which shall include, but not be limited to the following information.
The practicality of enforcing this article and any enforcement problems identified by the Rockaway Borough Chief of Police;
The impact of this article on juvenile crime and juvenile victimization statistics and on the public perception of juvenile crime and victimization;
The number of juveniles taken into custody for curfew violations; and
The number of official citizen complaints filed regarding the enforcement of this article.