PRINCE GEORGE'S COUNTY, Md. — Over a month ago, Prince George's County Executive Angela Alsobrooks announced a curfew for teenagers that would ban them from public places late at night would be enforced to help curve crime in the area. The curfew has now been observed for almost 30 days and could be coming to an end.
Under the curfew, teens under the age of 17 are required to stay in their homes between 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. on Sunday through Thursday, according to the Sept. 5 announcement. On Fridays and Saturdays, teens would have to be inside between 11:59 p.m. to 5 a.m.
If a teenager is out during the curfew hours they will be required to be with a parent or guardian.
In the county, crime involving teens has seen an increase in 2022. A spokesperson for Prince George's County Police informed WUSA9 at the end of August that there had been 344 carjackings to date. From those offenses, 140 arrests were made with the majority being minors.
Since the curfew, that has been enacted since the beginning of September, there have been three reported violations of the curfew. Within the first two weeks of the curfew, just days apart, there were two incidents:
- On Sept. 12, around 10:35 p.m., officers conducted a traffic stop on a driver who was observed committing multiple traffic violations in the 5700 block of Cypress Creek Drive in Chillum. A 17-year-old occupant was arrested on a gun charge. The 16-year-old driver was escorted home to her guardians.
- On Sept. 17, in the 800 block of Largo Center Drive, a 15-year-old boy was discovered with a gunshot wound to the foot and was transported to the hospital. Upon further investigation, the juvenile stated that he and a friend were playing with the gun when it discharged.
The third known offense happened on Oct. 6, when patrol officers responded to the report of a car being driven recklessly and potential drag racing behind a building on Powder Mill Road. When officers stopped the driver of the car that had crashed after hitting a curb, a 14-year-old was found behind the wheel. The teen was charged with driving without a license and released to his mother.
Parents of teens out past curfew, and owners of businesses allowing them on the premise after curfew, face a $50 fine for the first offense, $100 for a second offense, and $250 for subsequent offenses.
The curfew is not a new law but has been on the books in Prince George's County for decades.
"The administration successfully utilized a curfew in 2020 during the COVID-19 pandemic after thousands of youth were gathering at National Harbor," a spokesperson for Alsobrooks said ahead of the curfew. "The purpose of enforcing this existing curfew is not to penalize or burden children, it's to engage parents and family members in their safety and wellbeing."
WUSA9 has reached out to the Prince George's Police Department to see if there are any plans to extend the curfew after the 30 days are over. The department has not yet responded.