[HISTORY: Adopted by the Mayor and Council of the City of Taneytown 8-9-1999 by Ord. No. 8-99. Amendments noted where applicable.]
There has been an increase in juvenile violence, drug-related juvenile activity and crime by persons under the age of 17 in the city; and
Persons under the age of 17 are particularly susceptible by their lack of maturity and experience to participate in unlawful and gang-related activities and to be victims of older perpetrators of crime.
The purpose of this chapter is to provide for the protection of minors from each other and from other persons, to provide for the enforcement of parental control over and responsibility for children, to protect the general public and reduce the incidence of juvenile criminal activities pursuant to the city's power to promote the health, safety and general welfare of its citizens.
The following words, terms and phrases, when used in this chapter, shall have the meanings ascribed to them in this section, except where the context clearly indicates a different meaning:
- An unforeseen combination of circumstances or the resulting state that calls for immediate action. The term includes, but is not limited to, a fire, natural disaster, automobile accident or any situation requiring immediate action to prevent serious bodily injury or loss of life.
- Any privately owned place of business operated for a profit to which the public is invited, including but not limited to any place of amusement or entertainment.
- Any person under 17 years of age.
- Any individual, firm, association, partnership or corporation operating, managing or conducting any establishment. The term includes the members or partners of an association or partnership and the officers of a corporation.
- A person who is:
- PUBLIC PLACE
- Any place to which the public or a substantial group of the public has access and includes, but is not limited to, parks, streets, highways and common areas of schools, hospitals, apartment houses, office buildings, transport facilities and shops.
- SERIOUS BODILY INJURY
- Bodily injury that creates a substantial risk of death or that causes death, serious permanent disfigurement or protracted loss or impairment of the function of any bodily member or organ.
A minor commits an offense if he or she remains in any public place or on the premises of any establishment within the city during curfew hours.
A parent or guardian of a minor commits an offense if he or she knowingly permits, or by insufficient controls allows, the minor to remain in any public place or on the premises of any establishment within the city during curfew hours.
The owner, operator or any employee of an establishment commits an offense if he or she knowingly allows a minor to remain upon the premises of the establishment during curfew hours.
It is a defense to prosecution under § 98-4 of this chapter that the minor was:
Accompanied by the minor's parent or guardian;
On an errand at the direction of the minor's parent or guardian, without any detour or stop;
In a motor vehicle involved in interstate travel;
Engaged in an employment activity, or going to or returning home from an employment activity, without any detour or stop;
Involved in an emergency;
On the sidewalk abutting the minor's residence or abutting the residence of a next-door neighbor if the neighbor did not complain to the Police Department about the minor's presence;
Attending an official school, religious or other recreational activity supervised by adults and sponsored by a civic organization or another similar entity that takes responsibility for the minor, or going to or returning home from, without any detour or stop, an official school, religious or other recreational activity supervised by adults and sponsored by a civic organization or another similar entity that takes responsibility for the minor;
Exercising First Amendment rights protected by the United States Constitution, such as the free exercise of religion, freedom of speech and the right of assembly; or
Married or had been married or had disabilities of minority removed in accordance with law.
Before taking any enforcement action under this chapter, a police officer shall ask the apparent offender's age and reason for being in the public place. The officer shall not issue a citation or make an arrest under this chapter unless the officer reasonably believes that an offense has occurred and that, based on any response and other circumstances, no defense in § 98-5 of this chapter is present.
Any person who violates the provision of this chapter is guilty of a misdemeanor and of a separate offense for each day or part of a day during which the violation is committed, continued or permitted. Each offense, upon conviction, is punishable as provided in § 1-20.