County to enforce curfew for children younger than 17 - WNEM TV 5

County to enforce curfew for children younger than 17

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SAGINAW COUNTY, MI (WNEM) -

While most communities have curfews for kids, they are not often enforced.

However, that won't be the case for one Mid-Michigan county this summer.

"I think it's a necessity that kids know what the rules are," said Michael Decker, superintendent for St. Charles schools.

Decker learned the Saginaw County Sheriff's Department is cracking down on minors who violate curfew. The agency wants educators to spread the word before class lets out for the summer.

"For us, it's going to be an educational piece for our parents because they're the ones that are ultimately responsible for the kids," Decker said.

The county ordinance for curfew has been in place since 1994. It said anyone under 17 can't be hanging out and about between the hours of 10 p.m. and 7 a.m.

Sheriff William Federspiel said he believes strongly in his decision to put a new emphasis on enforcing the current law.

"Whether it be in the cities, whether it be in the townships, it's been a constant complaint from the people I work for which are citizens of this county. So it's important to me because it's important to them," Federspiel said.

He said minors who break curfew, or their parents, would be guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by up to 90 days in jail or a $500 fine.

Federspiel said he has a responsibility to protect children.

"If I'm a parent of a child who may be out and about and I don't know that my child snuck out, I would want my sheriff to let me know that my child got out of the house," Federspiel said.

As for Decker, he's confident his students and parents will be well-versed on the county ordinance before the bell rings for the final time in June.

"It's something that's been on the books and local law enforcement is going to enforce. And we're going to do a great job of trying to educate the kids and make sure that we put them in a position to be successful," Decker said.

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