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City of Flagler Beach discusses juvenile curfew

FLAGLER COUNTY, Fla. — The Flagler Beach Police Chief is calling for an 11 p.m. to 5 a.m. youth curfew. Commissioners are scheduled to discuss the idea Thursday.

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A similar step was taken in Volusia County in New Smyrna Beach in 2022.

Flagler Beach Police Chief Matt Doughney said many of the kids involved in recent situations in the city aren’t from there. He explained they’re being dropped off by their parents or coming over in groups with their friends.

“The most recent one was last week about 12:52 in the morning. A 13-year-old leaves her home, her mom doesn’t know she’s leaving and she’s trying to buy alcohol at the 7/11,” said Chief Doughney.

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The Chief said there is not much for teens to do in Flagler Beach at night because the only businesses open are bars.

“So they are just roaming around town. They may be taking selfies at 3 o’clock in the morning at the pier. Why is a juvenile out at 3 o’clock in the morning?” said Chief Doughney.

If the curfew passes, anyone under 18 found out in Flagler Beach past 11 p.m., will be written up and could face fines depending on the offense.

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For the most part, people seem to be in favor of the plan.

“If they enforce it the right way and make a punishment the first time and set an example, word will get around,” said Gene Walker.

However, one 17-year-old said it’s not fair.

“I think they should lower the age limit to like 16. It should not be like all minors because like if I am 17, I feel like I should be able to be out,” said Zachary O’Gynn.

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