Councilman Proposes Changes to Lexington Curfew Law

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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WTVQ)- A Lexington-Fayette Urban County Councilman is hoping to curb youth violence with a change to a more than 20 year old law. He says he wants to see Lexington Police enforcing curfews again.

Lexington mom, Anita Franklin, can only see her son through old photos. Antonio Franklin Jr. was found almost three years ago in Duncan Park, shot to death. Four teenagers were sentenced for it.

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“When I talk about him I can’t pull a picture out and say, ‘Oh, this is my son. He graduated from college.’ or ‘Oh, this is my son and his family.’ I have to, and when I’m educating people, I’m pulling out a picture of him laying in his coffin,” Franklin said.

Since her son died, Franklin has dedicated herself to ending violence. She says about a year ago she asked police about adding a curfew. Like many people, she did not realize there already is one. Kids in Lexington legally are not allowed to be outside from 1:00 to 5:00 a.m. on the weekends and 11:00 p.m. to 5:00 a.m. during the week.

She says police also told her they don not enforce curfew often because it would be a hardship on parents.

“Sometimes when we know we’re going to be held accountable then we make changes and so curfew is just holding people accountable,” Franklin said.

The curfew changes Franklin wanted to see a year ago could soon become reality. After six murder victims last year were teenagers and younger, Councilman Fred Brown is proposing curfew times be between 1 a.m. and 5 a.m. for all days of the week.

“In this day and time Saturdays and Sundays and Mondays and Tuesdays, they all run together,” Franklin said.

Brown says he also wanted to make the times standard so it would be easier for police to enforce. He says police tell him they have not used the law recently because they felt they could not get any results. With his proposal, and the conversation it is starting, Brown hopes to change that.

Brown says the bill will be scheduled for a reading next week or the week after.

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Veronica Jean Seltzer joins ABC 36 as Anchor/Reporter. On most weekdays, you will see her reporting the news. VJ hails from a small horse farm outside New York City and most recently comes from South Bend, Indiana where she reported for the CBS and Fox affiliates. VJ holds a Master of Science in Journalism degree from Columbia University and a Bachelor of Arts degree from Tufts University. Her passion for journalism runs deep. It began as she studied graffiti as an ancient form of communication in Athens, Greece. While a student journalist in Morocco, she learned her most important journalistic lesson: good stories are about people. VJ loves life in and around Lexington. She feels most at home among horses and a diverse community of fascinating people. She enjoys reporting during the week and on the weekend she strives to bring her neighbors the news that matters most to them. VJ enjoys going to neighborhood events, exploring, horseback riding, skiing, sailing, and good movies. Look for her out and about in the community! VJ invites you to reach out to her with story ideas or just to say hello! Find her on Facebook at Veronica Jean Seltzer ABC 36, tweet her @VJS_ABC36, or email her at VSeltzer@wtvq.com. She looks forward to hearing from you!