City Council Committee Passes Curfew Time Change for Unaccompanied Minors

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Members of the Chicago City Council's Public Safety Committee on Friday approved Mayor Lori Lightfoot's proposed earlier citywide curfew for minors after a string of violent crime -- from shootings to armed robberies to carjackings -- has recently plagued downtown.

Members of the committee on Friday voted 14-3 in favor of revising the 30-year-old curfew ordinance, which Lightfoot signed an executive order for earlier this week. The new curfew states that minors between the ages of 12 and 17 cannot be out on city streets any day of the week, from the hours of 10 p.m. - 6 a.m.

For those 12 and younger, that curfew becomes 9 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays

Previously, an 11 p.m. curfew for minors applied on weekends, and a 10 p.m. curfew applied on weekdays.

According to the revised ordinance, the curfew does not apply if the minor has been attending a ticketed or sponsored event, like Lollapalooza.

The new rule comes in addition to a new Millennium Park curfew, which states that unaccompanied minors under the age of 18 are not allowed at the park beginning at 6 p.m. Thursday through Sunday.

Lightfoot imposed a Millennium Park curfew following a fatal shooting of a 16-year-old near "The Bean" that occurred Saturday around 7:30 p.m.

Anyone under the age of 18 is "welcome at the Park during the evening hours as long as they are accompanied by at least one responsible adult," a press release from Lightfoot's office says.

Neither curfew outlines much detail regarding enforcement. However, according to a press release from Lightfoot's office, the Millennium Park curfew "will be strictly enforced and violations will be dealt with swiftly."

During a press conference Monday discussing the new rules, Lightfoot said" the Chicago Police will exhaust all other efforts before they take law enforcement actions to make sure that young people are safe."

"No, we don't want to arrest children," Lightfoot said. "If we have to because they're breaking the law, we will. But what we've seen in other areas of the city, when issues have arisen, is our officers talk to the young people, educate them about what the rules are and in most instances, the young people disperse without any incident. That's what we're hoping will happen."

In an interview with NBC 5's Mary Ann Ahern, Light said private security will be first in line to enforce the new restrictions at Millennium Park.

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