Mayor and CityPlace talk policing, curfew issues

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Worried about the perception of downtown crime, West Palm Beach likely will tighten its teen curfew law in November, at least for a three-month trial period.

That word, after a meeting Thursday in which officials of Related Group, CityPlace and the Downtown Development Authority discussed with Mayor Jeri Muoio and police how to improve downtown safety.

Muoio said Friday that downtown crime is not as frequent as news reports make it seem. Nonetheless the city is looking for ways to tweak patrol schedules, while it also replaces security cameras and adds bike and Segway patrols in neighborhoods just north of downtown. CityPlace has its own contingent of off-duty officers in addition to the city’s Entertainment District patrols, she said.

Probably in November, Muoio said, the city commission will consider moving its Friday and Saturday teen curfews to 10 p.m., from 11 p.m., she said. The downtown curfew already is 10 p.m. the rest of the week.

The city plans to collect crime data for the periods before, during and after the proposed ordinance, to gauge its effectiveness, she said. Also under consideration: bringing in a consultant to look at the overall security picture downtown.