Youth curfew at National Harbor now in effect

A youth curfew is now in effect at National Harbor in Prince George’s County, Maryland.

Unaccompanied kids and teens who are 16 and younger aren’t allowed there on Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights from 5 p.m. to 6 a.m. The first time a kid is caught unsupervised will come with a warning. After that, a written notice will be mailed to their parents.

The curfew comes after rowdy scenes last weekend, when about 800 young people at National Harbor were fighting, shoplifting, illegally smoking and engaging in other criminal behavior, Police Chief Malik Aziz said.

A sign at National Harbor seen on April 26, 2024. (WTOP/Matt Kaufax)

Prince George’s County Executive Angela Alsobrooks declared a state of emergency Thursday that allows officials to enforce the curfew.

Alsobrooks’ order came after the Prince George’s County Council took action to address incidents at National Harbor this week. The Committee of the Whole passed an emergency bill Tuesday that would let the county police chief designate juvenile curfew zones if requested by retail and commercial property owners.

That legislation could be taken up by the council next week. If passed, it would not become law until late next month at the earliest.

WTOP’s Matt Kaufax was at National Harbor when the curfew went into effect.

“There’s not a lot of activity on the streets, but you can see an elevated police presence,” he said. “I just had a squad car pull up to me a few seconds ago and there are signs clearly delineating all around National Harbor that the Prince George’s County emergency juvenile curfew is in effect.”

In the area of National Plaza and Waterfront Street, Kaufax said he spoke with a number of business owners about the curfew who said they really don’t have to worry about things until it gets dark.

“But, they say, when that happens, there have been a lot of issues recently with looting, vandalism, yelling, profanity, lots of fighting, lots of teens out and about just causing rowdiness and committing crime, frankly, in this area late night. They are in favor — every small business owner who I’ve spoken to today is in favor of this curfew,” he said.

Prince George’s County police confirmed to WTOP that exact data of how many warnings were dolled out will be released on Monday.

WTOP’s Jessica Kronzer and Matt Kaufax contributed to this report.

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Thomas Robertson

Thomas Robertson is an Associate Producer and Web Writer/Editor at WTOP. After graduating in 2019 from James Madison University, Thomas moved away from Virginia for the first time in his life to cover the local government beat for a small daily newspaper in Zanesville, Ohio.

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