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Miami-Dade Begins Enforcing 11 p.m. Curfew for Kids 17 and Younger

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Curfew laws targeting minors have been on the books in Miami-Dade for a while, but police actively enforce the ordinance only sporadically. The department announced yesterday that it will enforce the curfew in earnest immediately. Sorry, kids, you've got to be off the streets by 11 p.m. on school nights and midnight on the weekends.

The curfew is usually enforced during summer when school is out. So the news the curfew will be enforced while school is still in session comes as a bit of surprise, but many suspect it's a reaction to a rash of violent street crimes.

Youngsters are allowed to return to the streets at 6 a.m. Before that time, they are not allowed to "linger, stay, congregate, move about, wander, or stroll in any public place in Miami-Dade County."

There are several exemptions, including if the teen:

1. is accompanied by a parent or legal guardian, or by someone 21 years of age or older that has permission to be responsible for the juvenile;

2. is working or traveling to or from work;

3. is traveling interstate;

4. has written permission from a parent or guardian to run an errand;

5. is aiding or assisting in an emergency;

6. is traveling to or from a school, religious, civic, or county-sponsored event;

7. is emancipated by marriage or court order;

8. is homeless;

9. is exercising First Amendment rights;

10. is on the property of his/her residence, or a neighbor's residence if the neighbor does not object;

11. is attending or returning from a public event that began before 10 p.m. and has written permission; or

12. is authorized by the county commission.

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