NORTH LAS VEGAS, Nev – A parent is complaining that a warning would do, but police are defending an enforcement blitz that has resulted in about 50 schoolchildren getting $190 tickets for jaywalking.
"I'm sure parents would prefer to go down to court and deal with the ticket than to go to the hospital," said Officer Tim Bedwell, spokesman for North Las Vegas police. "This is not a complex issue. All we're asking is that students stay out of the streets."
Christopher Meier, whose 14-year-old stepdaughter and 13-year-old daughter got tickets last Friday, said he was upset that he'll have to take time off from his job to accompany them to court.
"A warning would be more justified than two $190 tickets," Meier said.
Fourteen-year-old Alexis Blackwell said she started crying when a police officer wrote tickets for her and her stepsister, Megan Christie, after they ran across the street.
Bedwell said frequent warnings from officers had not curbed problems with students crossing streets mid-block and walking in streets at several middle and high schools.
He said police think the attention drawn with stepped-up enforcement near campuses also might help reduce after-school problems such as loitering, vandalism and fighting.