Why a Curfew in Oakland Is Still a Bad Idea

Last year, the Express published two investigative reports showing that curfews not only don’t work, but implementing one in Oakland would be unnecessary. At the time, then-Police Chief Anthony Batts, along with city councilmen Ignacio De La Fuente and Larry Reid, was pushing for a youth curfew as a way to deal with Oakland’s soaring crime rate. Now, current Police Chief Howard Jordan has reportedly renewed the call for a citywide curfew, and the idea is still being backed by De La Fuente and others, including Chronicle columnist Chip Johnson and Tribune columnist Tammerlin Drummond. But the facts about curfews haven’t changed in the past eleven months: There is still no credible evidence that youth curfews lower violent crime, and there’s still no evidence that Oakland’s teens are responsible for the city’s continued high crime rate.

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