Curfew laws will be stringently enforced during the Carnival on St. Thomas, Police Commissioner Novelle E. Francis Jr. said Wednesday, calling the law an effective method to safeguard minors against accidents and criminal activities which can occur during the season.
Under the V.I. curfew law, anyone younger than 16 must be off the streets or highways before 10 p.m. unless accompanied by an adult legally responsible for the child’s behavior. Unsupervised minors can be taken into custody by the police and held until they are released to their parents or guardians.
Youth older than 16 can be on the streets after 10 p.m. but must be at least 18 to enter any establishment that serves alcohol. These establishments, as well as carnival village booth owners, are required by law to ask for the identification showing proof of age from anyone who looks younger than 30 years old. Anyone found serving alcohol to minors can face criminal charges.
The curfew law helps ensure the safety of youth and reminds parents to be more responsible, Francis said, aware of their children’s behavior and whereabouts at all times. Minors who violate curfew can be required to perform community service and a parent or legal guardian can have charges filed against them if a minor continues to violate the law.
The commissioner said curfew laws are in place for the protection of the community. Following these guidelines will help families have a safer, more joyous carnival season.