Residents challenge Clinton curfew at town meeting

Published: Jun. 13, 2013 at 2:47 AM CDT
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CLINTON, LA (WAFB) - The daily bustle of activity in downtown Clinton during the day now includes imposed restrictions on that activity at night, thanks to a curfew imposed on May 30.

Long-time Clinton resident Raven Davis supports the ordinance that restricts activity between the hours of 11 p.m. and 6 a.m.

"I'm all for it, I'm all for it," said Davis.

The ordinance according to town officials is designed to cut down on crime.

"If your car breaks down and you have to walk home that's one thing, but we're talking about people that walk up and down the streets all night," said town Alderman Clovis Matthews.

The town's police department will be enforcing the curfew but Davis wants to make sure law abiding citizens are not affected.

"Like I said they have a job to do but you have to take into consideration the people too, the ones that are doing right," added Davis.

The need for a curfew was brought up in a regular Board of Aldermen meeting as well.

"What problem are we trying to solve by imposing a curfew?" asked one resident.

"Driving, walking or gathering together does not constitute criminal behavior," said another.

Police Chief Fred Dunn, who initiated the idea with the board's approval, defended the ordinance and says if the curfew keeps one person in town from being a victim of crime, then it's well worth it.

"As long as I'm chief of police and I have the support of these Aldermen and the Mayor, I'm going to do whatever I have to do to protect you, Ms. Flowers, Mr. Beachum, Mr. Davis, anybody," said Dunn.

That is fine with Davis who believes the curfew will serve as a crime deterrent during the overnight hours.

"We'll have to adjust to it and see how it plays out but as I said I'm all for it," said Davis.

Clinton's curfew remains in effect but one of the town's aldermen did state to the public the board may revisit the issue when school resumes in the fall.

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