[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Commissioners of the Township of Caln 2-11-1999 by Ord. No. 1999-2. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Editor's Note: This ordinance also superseded former Ch. 69, Curfew, adopted 10-12-1959 by Ord. No. 1959-3, as amended.
This chapter shall be known and may be cited as the "Curfew Ordinance."
This chapter is an updating of the Caln Township Curfew Ordinance and, in accordance with prevailing community standards, prescribes regulations for the presence of minors on streets, in public places and other locations in Caln Township during certain hours, all for the welfare and protection of minors, the furtherance of parental responsibility and for public health, safety and welfare. Accordingly, the Board of Commissioners finds as follows:
Reduce the number of juvenile crime victims;
Reduce injuries and accidents involving juveniles;
Reduce additional time for officers in the field;
Provide additional options for dealing with gang problems;
Reduce juvenile peer pressure to stay out late; and
Assist parents in the control of their children.
For the purpose of the Curfew Ordinance, the following terms, phrases, words and their derivations shall have the meanings set forth hereinafter. When not inconsistent with the context, words used in the present tense shall include the future, words in the plural number shall include the singular, words in the singular number shall include the plural and the masculine pronoun shall include the feminine pronoun. The word "shall" as used hereinafter is to be construed as mandatory and not directory.
- Any privately owned place of business operated, any place of amusement or entertainment to which the public is invited or any nonprofit entity operating within the Township.
- Having actual knowledge and including such knowledge which a parent should reasonably be expected to have, under all attendant circumstances, concerning the whereabouts of a minor in that parent's legal custody. It shall be no defense for purposes of this chapter that a parent is indifferent to the activities or conduct or whereabouts of a minor.
- Any individual under the age of 18 years.
- Any individual, firm, association, partnership or corporation owning, operating, managing or conducting any establishment and, whenever used in any clause prescribing a penalty, the term "operator" as applied to associations or partnerships shall include all members or partners thereof and, as applied to corporations, shall include the officers thereof.
- Any person having legal custody of a minor as:
- PUBLIC PLACE
- Any public street (as defined herein) and all Township parks, playgrounds, public buildings or vacant lots located in the Township, whether such vacant lots are owned by the Township or are owned privately.
- To stay behind, to tarry and to stay unnecessarily upon the streets or in public places or establishments, including the congregating of groups in which any minor involved would not be using the streets, public places or establishments for ordinary or serious purposes, such a mere passage or going home. To implement this definition with additional precision and precaution, numerous exceptions hereto are expressly contained in and defined in § 69-5 of this Curfew Ordinance.
- A way or place of whatever nature, open to the use of the public for purposes of vehicular travel or, in the case of sidewalk thereof, for pedestrian travel. The term "street" as used herein includes the legal right-of-way, including, but not limited to, the cartway of traffic lanes, the curb and sidewalks (whether paved or unpaved) and any grass plots or other grounds found within the legal right-of-way of a street. For purposes of this chapter, "street" also applies to ways the public is privileged to use over private property as long as the owner thereof permits such public use (including, by way of example but not limitation, sidewalks and grass plots open to public use) and to parking areas of any types (including, by way of example but not limitation, residential, municipal or commercial parking areas) which are open to and available for public use whether or not assessed by any street. In addition, the term "street" shall apply irrespective of what it is named or was formerly named, whether "alley," "avenue," "court," "road" or otherwise, or whether it is maintained by the Township and irrespective of whether it is open to the public as a matter of right.
- The prevailing standard of time, whether Eastern standard time or Eastern daylight saving time, as observed at that hour (or minute) by the public in the Township; prima facie evidence of the time for purposes of this chapter shall be the time actually observed in the Township administrative offices or in the Caln Township Police Department.
- The Township of Caln, Chester County, Pennsylvania, with offices located at 253 Municipal Drive, Thorndale, Pennsylvania.
- YEAR OF AGE
- The age of an individual as established on the day of any infraction alleged hereunder. For purposes of this Curfew Ordinance, the "year of age" shall be the period of time between the previous birthday of an individual and the next consecutive birthday (but not including the day of such birthday) of an individual.
It shall be unlawful for any person under the age of 18 to remain in or upon any street, public place or establishment within the Township between 10:15 p.m. prevailing time and 6:00 a.m. prevailing time of the following day, except:
In the following cases, a minor remaining on a public street, public place or in an establishment during the hours set forth in § 69-4 above shall not be considered to be in violation of the Curfew Ordinance:
When 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. Any minor desiring to avail himself or herself of the provisions of this exception shall establish the validity of such exercise by first delivering to the Township Police Department a letter, dated and signed by the minor and a parent of the minor, containing the following information:
The minor's name.
The minor's age.
The minor's address.
The minor's telephone number.
The parents' names.
The parents' address;
The parents' telephone number;
A statement specifying when, where and in what manner the minor will be in or on the streets, public place or establishment (during the hours when this chapter is otherwise applicable) in the exercise of the First Amendment Rights specified in the letter.
In the case of reasonable necessity, provided that the minor's parents shall have first delivered to the Township Police Department a written notice stating the facts establishing the reasonable necessity and a description of the specified streets, public place or establishment at designated times for a described purpose, including points of origin and destination; and
The written notice has been countersigned and dated by the Chief of the Caln Township Police Department (or other police officer authorized by the Chief to sign such notices).
When the minor is on the sidewalk of the minor's place of residence, or on the sidewalk of any premises immediately adjacent to the premises in which the minor resides, provided that the owner of the adjacent premises does not object to the minor's presence.
When returning home, by a direct route from (and within 30 minutes after the termination of) a school activity or an activity of a religious or other voluntary association, provided that the minor shall, upon request of any police officer, provide to such police officer a written statement identifying:
When the minor, with parental consent, is in a motor vehicle and such motor vehicle is involved in bona fide interstate travel through the Township or such interstate travel begins or ends in the Township.
It shall be a violation of this chapter for a parent having legal custody of a minor to knowingly permit or allow such minor to be or remain upon any Township street, public place or establishment within the Township between the hours specified in § 69-4 above.
It shall be a violation of this chapter for the operator (or their agents or employees) of any establishment to knowingly permit any minor to remain upon the premises of the establishment during the hours specified in § 69-4 hereof.
Each violation of the provisions of this section shall constitute a separate offense.
Any police officer, upon finding or having attention called to the presence of any minor on the streets, in public places or establishments of the Township in prima facie violation of the provisions of this chapter shall immediately obtain from the minor the minor's:
Upon obtaining this information, and in order to safeguard the person of the minor, the police officer shall take the minor to the Caln Township Police Department and shall immediately notify the parent or parents of the minor and instruct the parent or parents to come to Caln Township Police Department and take custody of the minor; upon the arrival of the parent or parents at the Caln Township Police Department, the minor shall be released to the custody of the parent or parents.
If a parent cannot be located, or fails to take charge of the minor, then the minor shall be released to the juvenile authorities of Chester County, except that the minor may temporarily be entrusted to a relative, neighbor or other person who will on behalf of the minor's parent assume the responsibility of caring for the minor pending the availability or arrival of the minor's parent.
In the case of a first violation of this chapter by a minor, the Chief of the Caln Township Police Department shall, within 72 hours after the time of the taking of the minor into custody, send to the minor's parents, by certified mail, return receipt requested, a written notice of the violation of the provisions of this chapter, including enforcement of the parental responsibility provision of § 69-6 and the penalties contained in this § 69-8.
If, after the written warning notice sent pursuant to Subsection D above of a first violation by a minor, a parent violates the provisions of this chapter, such violation shall be treated as a first offense by the parent. For such offense, the parent, upon conviction thereof, shall be sentenced to pay a fine of not more than $100, together with costs of prosecution, or to imprisonment for a term not to exceed 30 days, or both. For each subsequent violation, the parent, upon conviction thereof, shall be sentenced to pay a fine of not more than $500, together with costs of prosecution, or to imprisonment for a term not to exceed 30 days, or both.
Any minor who violates any provision of this chapter more than three times within a one-year period shall be referred to the appropriate county or state entity established pursuant to the provisions of the Act of July 9, 1976, P.L. 586, No. 142, Section 2 et seq., as amended (42 Pa.C.S.A. § 6301 et seq.), i.e., the Juvenile Act for disposition.
Any operator of an establishment and any agents or employees of that operator who violate the provisions of this chapter shall, upon conviction thereof, be sentenced to pay a fine of not more than $500, together with costs of prosecution, or to imprisonment for a term not to exceed 30 days, or both.