New Jersey children are not held to the same legal standards as adults. While in some areas, juveniles are given some leniency, they actually have less freedom than most adults. In many New Jersey cities there are rules that govern when and where a child can be at certain times of the day. During the school year, for example, children are expected to be in school during the day. However there are also restrictions about when — and for what purpose — children can be out at night.
These curfew laws vary city to city. In nearby Dover, New Jersey, children are subject to a curfew. Under Chapter 154 of Dover’s ordinances, juveniles cannot be in any public area — place or street — between 10:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m. unless the juvenile is traveling to or from work or is with the child’s parent. In this case, a juvenile is defined as a person under the age of 17.
There are some exceptions to this rule. Under section 153-3, the curfew does not apply to children who are attending a religious institution or community-sponsored event. The curfew also doesn’t apply if the juvenile is at a school-related extracurricular activity. And of course, the rule doesn’t apply in a medical emergency.
There are penalties if a juvenile is found guilty of a curfew violation. In Dover, a juvenile can be fined up to $1,000 for a violation and may be required to perform community service.
Juvenile crimes can also have other long-term consequences. A conviction on juvenile crimes charges can interfere with a young person’s employment or education, leading to more problems later in life. To avoid these issues and to protect their legal rights, juveniles should seek legal help when facing criminal allegations.