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(A) Definitions. For purpose of enforcing and interpreting this section, the following definitions shall control:
(1) A "minor" shall mean any person under seventeen (17) years of age.
(2) A "parent" shall mean a person who is the natural or adoptive parent of a minor. As used herein, "parent" shall also include a court appointed guardian or other person who is eighteen (18) years of age or older, authorized by the parent, by a court order, or by a court appointed guardian to have the care and custody of a minor.
(3) A "guardian" shall mean any person to whom custody of a minor has been given by court order.
(4) An emergency shall include, but not be limited to, the following: fire, natural disaster, vehicular accident, or obtaining immediate medical care for another person.
(5) A public "place" means any place to which the public or a substantial group of the public has access and includes, but is not limited to, streets, highways, and the common areas of schools, hospitals, apartment houses, office buildings, transport facilities, and shops.
(1) It shall be unlawful for a minor to purposefully remain, walk, run, stand, drive or ride about in or upon any public place in the city, between the hours of 11:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m.
(2) It shall be unlawful for the parent having legal custody of a minor to knowingly allow or permit the minor to be in violation of the curfew imposed in subsection(B)(1) of this ordinance.
(C) Defenses. It is a defense to prosecution under § 9-2-14 of this ordinance if any of the following exist.
(1) The minor was accompanied by a parent or guardian;
(2) The minor was accompanied by another adult approved by the parent or guardian of the minor;
(3) The minor was on an emergency errand;
(4) The minor was attending or going directly to or coming directly from a school, community, government or religious activity;
(5) The minor was engaged in or going directly to or coming directly from a lawful employment activity;
(6) The minor was on the sidewalk of the place where the minor resides or on the sidewalk of a place where the minor has permission from his/her parent or guardian to be or on the sidewalk of a next-door neighbor who has not communicated an objection to this activity by the minor to any police officer.
(7) The minor was upon an errand directed by his/her parent or guardian;
(8) The minor was in a motor vehicle involved in intrastate or interstate transportation for which passage through the curfew area is the most direct route;
(9) The minor was legitimately exercising his or his First Amendment rights protected by the United States Constitution, including but not limited to the free exercise of religion, freedom of speech, and the right of assembly.
(D) Enforcement Procedure.
(1) First Offense. Any police officer, upon finding a minor in violation of section (B) of this ordinance, shall determine the name and address of the minor, and the name and address of the minor's parent or guardian. A warning notice shall be forwarded to the Juvenile Division of the Dillon Police Department, which shall send a letter to the parent or guardian of the minor advising of the fact that the minor was found in violation of this ordinance, and soliciting cooperation from the parent or guardian to avoid any subsequent violations of this ordinance by the offending minor.
(2) Second Offense. Any police officer, upon finding that a minor is in violation of section (B)(1), and once previously warned as required in section (D)(1) shall again determine the minor's name and address and the name and address of the minor's parents or guardian. A second warning notice shall be issued to and served upon the minor, who shall be ordered to immediately go home by the most direct means and route. A copy of the second warning notice shall be forwarded to the Juvenile Division of the Dillon Police Department which shall schedule a personal conference with the minor's parent or guardian and the minor concerning the necessity of the enforcement of this ordinance and the city's expectations of parental control of minors.
(3) Third Offense. Any police officer, upon finding that a minor in violation of section (B) and that the minor has twice previously been found in violation of section (B) and twice previously warned as required in section (D)(1) and section (D)(2) shall again determine the minor's name and address and the name and address of the minor's parent/guardian. A complaint shall then be filed against the minor's parents/guardians in municipal court for violation of section (B)(2) hereof. The City Police Department shall be responsible for filing all necessary legal papers pursuant to this ordinance, supply the municipal court with all necessary documentation, and provide such testimony as be required to pursue any prosecution under this ordinance against any minor or parent/guardian.
(1) Any minor violating the provisions of this ordinance shall be guilty of a misdemeanor as defined in the South Carolina Code of Laws.
(2) A parent or guardian of a minor violating this ordinance shall be guilty of a misdemeanor as defined in the South Carolina Code of Laws.
(3) In assessing punishment for either a parent, guardian or minor, the municipal court is encouraged to consider utilization of the community service program.
(Ord. 97-03, passed 2-10-1997)