Concerned Earle citizens want curfew enforced

Concerned Earle citizens want curfew enforced

Former, current mayor concerned about ‘ out of control’ youth causing trouble in community

Earle has agreed to revisit its curfew after hearing a citizen concern about out of control juveniles causing mischief.

Former Mayor Otis Davis brought the issue up during the citizens concerns portion of the May city council meeting, and said he is tired of seeing youths roaming the streets at all hours of the night, running through people’s back yards, and cussing at people.

“We have a real problem with our kids and it’s gotten really bad with them being in the streets,” Davis said.

“It’s out of control. And it’s not just one day. It’s every day. And it’s not just my neighborhood. It’s all over the city.”

Davis said he recently tried to pull into his driveway and had to go around a group of youths who were standing around and they cussed him out for trying to get them to move.

“I’m not going to live here and pay taxes and have kids run all over the place and throw things in my yard and cuss in my presence and nothing be done,” Davis said. “I have a problem with that.” The city already has a curfew in place at the city park, but officials agreed they need to look at it again and possibly make it tougher.

“I agree with you,” Mayor Sherman Smith said. “It’s a legitimate concern. Most of the time when you see a group of kids together and there isn’t a game going on, they’re up to no good.”

Davis said he would like to see the city make the curfew citywide and empower police to arrest youths who are out past curfew.

“I’m not a complainer. But we can’t sit by idly and do nothing,” Davis said.

“When the youth is running wild and you call the police and ask them to come, they come. But somebody needs to start carrying them to jail and make the parents come and get them. That will send a message that the people of this city are not going to tolerate it. I don’t care if it’s my own grandson. If he’s out late and the curfew is up, put him in jail and call me.”

Smith said the council will put the curfew issue on next month’s agenda.

“In the meantime, we will ask our officers to monitor the situation and roll it up as much as possible until we can get something in place,” Smith said.

By Mark Randall