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  • Juvenile Curfews

    The neighborhood that we are in charge of just passed an rule on juv's curfew.. We are discussing how to go about this new rule. Anyone else have something like this?

  • #2
    What kind of rule is it? Is the neighborhood private property, or a mix of public streets and private property? Do you have police powers, or are you considered an agent of the state (and therefore capable of violating a youth's civil rights by enforcing what may be an unconstitutional infringement on their right to assemble)?

    Generally (very) speaking, if its a rider on the lease, then its a civil matter and you can enforce it by identifying who is on the property you control after hours, then informing management of the non-compliance with the lease.

    If they don't live there, then its a simple trespass situation. If they do, they need to identify themselves and where they belong (else they're a trespasser), which solves the "who do I write up?" problem.

    If its public streets you're trying to enforce this on, take care. While on private property, one may stop anyone and determine if they are legitimately supposed to be on the property. On a public street, no such authority exists.

    I have seen properties with a 10 PM curfew for all persons, not just minors. We enforced it as above, identifying the persons and their legitimacy, then having trespass warnings issued for non-residents and lease violations written up for the management on residents.
    Some Kind of Commando Leader

    "Every time I see another crazy Florida post, I'm glad I don't work there." ~ Minneapolis Security on Florida Security Law

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    • #3
      The neighborhood is private property, expensive houses and large. I am a security officer, not with the state. The plan is to transport the juv's back to their residence. It was mostly done to promote the safety of the kids, as well as to cut any vandalism that may occur.

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      • #4
        Questions to consider then are, "What if the kid doesn't want to accompany you?" Generally you can't physically make them, unless escorting a trespasser off property.
        Some Kind of Commando Leader

        "Every time I see another crazy Florida post, I'm glad I don't work there." ~ Minneapolis Security on Florida Security Law

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        • #5
          Originally posted by PSOfficer
          The neighborhood is private property, expensive houses and large. I am a security officer, not with the state. The plan is to transport the juv's back to their residence. It was mostly done to promote the safety of the kids, as well as to cut any vandalism that may occur.
          I'm not sure I'd transport, for a couple of reasons. First, it could really tie you up if you run into a crowd of juvies; second, there's increased liability with every transport (handcuffed or not). Third, there's the risk that a juvie will make an accusation of a sexual advance or some other kind of misdeed against the transporting officer.

          Can you hold the juvies "where found" and call the parents to come get them instead of transporting them yourself? I think it would be more efficient, probably. And...maybe it wouldn't be such a terrible thing if Dad had to drag his butt off the sofa and come get Junior. About the third time, maybe he'd have a few words with Junior. That was more or less our philosophy when I was a cop and we had a curfew one summer. The parents didn't like it one bit, but most of them knew who to blame. One of the mothers gave her daughter such a PINCH on the way to the car you could hear her squealing a mile away. We ran out the door -- at the speed of turtles, of course -- to intervene, but darn, we were too late to catch them. I don't remember seeing that girl out after curfew again, though. I've often wondered if her mother murdered her.
          Last edited by SecTrainer; 04-29-2007, 02:13 AM.
          "Every betrayal begins with trust." - Brian Jacques

          "I can't predict the future, but I know that it'll be very weird." - Anonymous

          "There is nothing new under the sun." - Ecclesiastes 1:9

          "History, with all its volumes vast, hath but one page." - Lord Byron

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          • #6
            We have only had two incidents since the rule has been passed. The concensus of Officers and HOA staff is to handcuff the juveniles for their own safety. I handled one of the incidents.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by PSOfficer
              We have only had two incidents since the rule has been passed. The concensus of Officers and HOA staff is to handcuff the juveniles for their own safety. I handled one of the incidents.
              Has an attorney for your company reviewed this and given his or her legal advice? Have the parents signed consent forms for their children to not only be transported but also handcuffed?

              In terms of liability issues of sexual claims... a jury is more likely to believe a juvenile was sexually molested if he or she is handcuffed than if they are not because in handcuffing them their freedom to leave is taken away and that is a major strike against the security officer being accused. I think you would be hardpressed to convience a jury that they were legitimately handcuffed as a matter of "their safety" if they are not displaying objective, visible and provable behavior that suggests they are a danger to themselves or others.

              In terms of transporting on top of handcuffing... you might want to check into what your state laws are on false imprisonment specific to juveniles and in the presence and absence of a consent form signed by [both] of the parents and / or guardians.

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              • #8
                Forget rape charges, unless you are authorized under some element of common or statutory law, then there's no legal right for you to be handcuffing children (child abuse) and taking them places against their will.

                Under what authority are you placing a minor in physical restraints? Under what authority are you causing a minor to be transported from one place to another against their will?

                A private person doing this opens themselves up to great liability, both civil and criminal, by doing these things without specific authority.
                Some Kind of Commando Leader

                "Every time I see another crazy Florida post, I'm glad I don't work there." ~ Minneapolis Security on Florida Security Law

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                • #9
                  Good job!

                  Some of what we do, in our state, in dealing with juveniles and curfews on a state/city level, then our property level, is age of reason and reasonable action taken.

                  Under most state laws and federal, "In Loco Parentis" can apply, which means when you make contact with the juvenile, you are held as the responsible party of that juvenile, until the legal guardians or law enforcement take custody of said juvenile. This is applied alot in the educational system. Teachers are held repsonsible for for the juveniles until released to parents.

                  That, applied with good samaritan laws, will help protect you when dealing with them. When relocating them, definately get them to comply on their own accord for your own protection, but since it is private property, and said juvenile is in violation of private property rights, you can legally detain the juvenile.

                  Safest and best thing to do, is upon contact of violating juvenile, is to detain, make contact with parents via phone, and either obtain the parents compliance of returning juvenile to their custody, in some cases release juvenile on O.R., and if that is not an option, then have parent come to the location to pick up juvenile.

                  Personally, we like to have the parents come and pick them up. That is time out of the irresponsible parents schedule, and creates disinterest by the juvenile to be found in said violation in the future. Like mail, have parent sign for release of juvenile as it protects you.

                  If you absolutely must transport said juvenile under any condition, always atleast 2 officers, for your safety, the safety of the juvenile and liability reduction. Document the bleep out of the transport, with mileage, times, conditions, applications, names, personal information, and so on. Have a signature block for the juvenile and parent that is a waiver of clearance stating the juvenile was returned to the presence of the guardian in "good working condition". If any of the outside parties wish to refuse to sign, get LE presence to clear it. By having their presence in a refusal to sign, the LE officers can witness the juveniles conditions and reports or comments prior to discharge of "In loco Parentis" custody.

                  We do a nightly round up, and bring all of ours to the control center. COntact parents, and have a couple officers "mainstay watch" over them and make sure release forms are signed. That frees up the rest of the staff to retrieve more and continue duties. It also promotes a safe and secure site for the juvenile and others.

                  I encourage proactive interaction of this nature!!
                  Deputy Sheriff

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                  • #10
                    When I use to do Loss Prevention work, years ago, if we contacted a juvenine for shoplifting we had to detain them until at least one of their parents arrived to take custody of the child or, if we could not contact the parent or guardian then we had to call the police.

                    However, this is far different from that of merely breaking a curfew, which appears to be based not on statutory law but on community residential policies and that is very dangerous ground to be treading in, in terms of probable (not just possible) civil and criminal liabilities.

                    Not only are there issues of potential crimes of child abuse, false imprisonment and sexual claims of molestation, but such might also fall into the category of kidnapping depending on the facts and laws involved that are specific to that state in regard to juveniles.

                    Unlike laws specific to adults, juvenile laws are much stricter and the line is so thin in what is legally permitted and what is not that it is very easy to cross the line without ever knowing it beforehand or at the time the line is crossed.

                    A more appropriate thing to do is (1) call the parent(s) or guardian and have them come and get their child rather than pawning buck off on the security officers because the parent / guardian is too lazy to get off their rears and properly supervise their own children. Or (2) if the juvenile is of proper age, have him or her walk home while the security officer follows from a safe distance away observing the juvenile without obstructions and then speak with the parent / guardian when the juvenile gets home.

                    But under no circumstances do you handcuff and transport a juvenile merely because he / she is in violation of a [community imposed policy] (sic) pertaining to a curfew.
                    Last edited by Christopherstjo; 04-29-2007, 04:43 AM.

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                    • #11
                      Another excellent option is a video camera. In car or on person may help you to avoid any problems. Remember once you start the recording dont stop until custody is turned over to the parents and you depart the area.
                      Robert
                      Here endith the lesson

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Arff312
                        Another excellent option is a video camera. In car or on person may help you to avoid any problems. Remember once you start the recording dont stop until custody is turned over to the parents and you depart the area.
                        Although I agree 100% with the idea of using video cameras to document encounters, I fear it may open up another can of worms when it involves minors. You are now videotaping a minor, and some states might prohibit that unless you have the consent of the parent or guardian.

                        For example... In Minneapolis, we were intructed by the city attorney that we were not allowed to take photographs of minors that we arrested for trespassing. I am not sure if this still stands, as this was during the summer of 2005. (Sgt. Newby, you should know the city attorney that I speak of... Lois Conroy. She is a liason of some sort to the HCMC security dept. You have any input on this?)

                        Anyways, you should first and foremost get the participation of the parents before you do anything. Handcuffing minors who have not actually broken any laws can get you in some hot water if the parent disagrees with that course of action.

                        If it was my decision, I would identify the kid and call the parents to come them up. As SecTrainer noted, after dragging the parents out a few times to pick up junior, the problem will hopefully fix itself.

                        Be patient, as you should be when any new policy is put into effect. The next few weeks will be a learning process for everyone involved. Be proactive in ensuring that every parent in the community is aware of the policy, and the subsequent action that will be taken by the security department (which it sounds like you guys need to figure out exactly what action you will take, of which you need to decide on FAST).

                        Long story short...
                        1. Decide on how you will enforce the policy, and
                        2. Notify every parent of how the policy will be enforced.
                        "To win one hundred victories in one hundred battles is not the highest skill. To subdue the enemy without fighting is the highest skill." Sun-Tzu

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                        • #13
                          I am by no means endorsing the use of handcuffs if they havetn commited a crime. As far as the videotaping there really isnt much ground for them to standon. We are all issued video cameras for our belts and carry tham and tape certain types of calls. Any time a minor is involved it is taped. I have never heard anything that you cant tape a minor as then the cameras in stors and malls are no good. Also I defintely would not transport them unless specifically requested to by parents and it is absolutley needed.
                          Robert
                          Here endith the lesson

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                          • #14
                            Thank you for all the good ideas.. I will take them to our meeting. I'm trying to understand why handcuffing is such a big deal to some. It would seem to me that it is just a safety thing. I have cuffed before, and never had a problem with it.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by PSOfficer
                              I'm trying to understand why handcuffing is such a big deal to some. It would seem to me that it is just a safety thing. I have cuffed before, and never had a problem with it.
                              Probably was not a kid with a lawyer daddy....
                              Quote me as saying I was mis-quoted.
                              Groucho Marx

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