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Under-18 curfew in Lexington moving from 1 a.m. to midnight

By Beth Musgrave Lexington Herald-Leader

LEXINGTON -- Curfew for those younger than 18 will move from 1 a.m. to midnight under changes to Lexington's curfew ordinance passed Thursday night by the Lexington Urban County Council.

The council had been debating the changes to the curfew laws for several months.

The Planning and Public Safety Committee originally recommended a 1 a.m. curfew all seven days. The current ordinance, which is more than two decades old, allows youths to stay out until 11 p.m. from Sunday to Thursday and until 1 a.m. on weekends.

Paducah has a similar ordinance. Curfew for children under the age of 18 in Paducah is 11 p.m. from Sunday to Thursday and until 1 a.m. Friday and Saturday. Minors caught on Paducah streets between curfew and 5 a.m. each morning would be in violation, which is the same as Lexington's ordinance.

During Thursday night's meeting, several council members said moving the curfew to 1 a.m. during the week was too lenient. A motion to move the curfew to midnight for all seven days was approved 8-7.

Lexington Police Chief Mark Barnard said that police were looking for a consistent time for all seven days, making it easier to enforce, and that whether it was midnight or 1 a.m. was up to the council. "It's consistency that we are looking for," Barnard said. "We are experiencing a high number of juveniles in stolen vehicles."

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