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Abstract

This article examines the effect of a teen curfew on juvenile arrest rates and reviews the first year of the curfew's implementation in a city of over 200,000 population. Juvenile arrest rates were compared for three years prior to the curfew's enactment and three years of curfew enforcement. Data related to 377 curfew violations and 83 parent citations issued in 22 police beats during the first year of implementation were analyzed to determine whether the curfew was primarily enforced in areas with serious juvenile crime or targeted low income, minority neighborhoods. Results indicate that the curfew had no effect on total juvenile arrests, felonies, misdemeanors, violent (serious) crimes, or property crimes. More curfew violations were issued in areas with higher rates of juvenile arrests, higher levels of police presence, and lower family incomes. Parental citations were highest in areas with lower family income and greater proportions of African American populations.

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