Las Vegas Sun

October 22, 2014

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Joe Downtown: Making sense of the valley’s curfew laws

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Leila Navidi

Officer I. Williams cards Christopher Stovner, 22, in the Fremont East District on Friday, July 5, 2013.

The Las Vegas City Council’s vote Wednesday to enact a stricter curfew for teens downtown is fairly easy to understand on its own.

Simply put, nobody under 18 is allowed in a specific area of downtown from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. without a parent or guardian.

But like any law, there are important details and exemptions to consider.

And what about the rest of the city? Or for that matter, the Strip and Clark County?

The Sun set out to help explain where you can, and can’t, go if you’re under 18.

Downtown Las Vegas

Starting Friday, anyone younger than 18 can be fined $300 if they are in the area bound by Main Street, Ogden Avenue, Bridger Avenue and Maryland Parkway from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. Fridays, Saturdays, legal holidays or Dec. 31.

But there are several exceptions. Children and teens are allowed in that area during restricted times if:

• They are accompanied by a parent, legal guardian or a responsible person older than 21 approved by the child’s parent or legal guardian.

• They are employed and have to travel through the curfewed area on their way home or to work. In that case, they have a 30-minute travel window and must carry a written statement from their employer verifying where and when they work.

• They are coming home from a meeting or “a place of public entertaining, such as a movie, play or sporting event, or from a school, social or religious activity.” Like the work exemption, this waiver applies for only 30 minutes before and after the event, but never after 1 a.m.

• They are running an emergency errand.

• They are attending a special event for which the city waived the curfew. The permit for the event must specify that the curfew law doesn't apply.

Las Vegas, in general

During the school year, Sunday through Thursday, children and teens younger than 18 are not allowed in public places between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m.

During school holidays, the curfew bans them from being out from midnight and 5 a.m.

Friday and Saturday, the time frame is a little more lenient. The curfew for people under 18 runs mignight to 5 a.m.

The Strip

Young people 18 and under are prohibited from the following areas between 9 p.m. and 5 a.m. Fridays, Saturdays and legal holidays and from 6 p.m. to 5 a.m. Dec. 31:

• Las Vegas Boulevard between Sahara Avenue and Sunset Road

• Harmon Avenue between Las Vegas Boulevard and Koval Lane

• Dunes Road/Flamingo Road between Interstate 15 and Koval Lane

• Spring Mountain Road/Sands Drive between Vegas Plaza Drive and Koval Lane

• Desert Inn between Industrial Road and Las Vegas Boulevard

• Convention Center Drive

• Riviera Boulevard

• Circus Circus Drive

They are allowed, however, in public areas if they are accompanied by a parent, legal guardian or responsible person older than 21.

Clark County, in general

During the school year, children and teens 18 and younger may not be in public places between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m. Sunday through Thursday and midnight and 5 a.m. Friday and Saturday.

During school holidays, the curfew runs midnight to 5 a.m.

The law also applies in arcades, unless the young person is with a parent or legal guardian.

Laughlin

People younger than 18 cannot be on Casino Drive from the 1500 block to the 300 block from 6 p.m. to 5 a.m. on the last Wednesday and Thursday in April or on the Friday, Saturday or Sunday following those days.

On all other days, Clark County’s general curfew applies.

Joe Schoenmann doesn’t just cover downtown; he lives and works there. Schoenmann is Greenspun Media Group’s embedded downtown journalist, working from an office in the Emergency Arts building.

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