Greater Cincinnati malls cracking down on youth-induced disruptions

After hundreds of teens wreaked havoc at Northgate Mall in Colerain Twp. Thursday night, Dec. 26, 2019, the Colerain Township Police Department released a statement saying they were putting more officers near the mall and surrounding businesses. CREDIT: WCPO

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After hundreds of teens wreaked havoc at Northgate Mall in Colerain Twp. Thursday night, Dec. 26, 2019, the Colerain Township Police Department released a statement saying they were putting more officers near the mall and surrounding businesses. CREDIT: WCPO

At least two Greater Cincinnati malls are taking measures to battle juvenile-induced issues during the holiday shopping season .

After teens flooded Northgate Mall and brawled there Thursday evening, frightening shoppers and workers and storming nearby streets, the Colerain Twp. Police Department arrested nine people.

Police on Friday said the conduct of youth at the Cincinnati-area mall was “neither conducive to that environment nor lawful.”

"On more than one occasion, groups of individuals, mostly juveniles who have been dropped off at Northgate Mall or to attend movies at the XScape Theater, have gathered to loiter on the lot of Northgate Mall and become disruptive, intimidating, and have engaged in fights," the CTPD statement reads.

“Much of this conduct has escalated to the point of criminal activity to include Criminal Trespassing and Disorderly Conduct, requiring arrests during which resistance was encountered.”

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That led to additional criminal charges being filed and a police officer being injured.

As part of a solution, the police said they will dedicate additional officers to stay near the mall and businesses nearby in hopes of deterring this behavior.

The police also wrote that Northgate Mall’s policy states no one under 18 is allowed on mall property after 5 p.m. without a parent on weekends and during school break periods.

The Xscape Theater at the mall also has a policy stating no child 16 years old or younger is allowed into a movie showing past 9 p.m. without a parent or legal guardian. If a movie ends after 9 p.m., the child has 20 minutes to leave the property.

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A legal guardian can only sponsor a maximum of four youth, according to the theater’s website. If the movie finishes after 9 p.m. the youth, 16 or under, will have 20 minutes to leave the theatre premises after the movie ends.

In addition, Colerain Twp. has a juvenile curfew which does not allow anyone under 18 outside between midnight and 5 a.m. without a parent, unless they are going to work, school or a church event.

“Those individuals who choose not to comply with the law will face arrest and prosecution,” police said.

Northgate Mall isn’t the only Greater Cincinnati mall working to combate juvenile-induced incidents.

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To curb “disruptive behavior by unsupervised youth” during the holiday shopping season’s final stretch, Kenwood Towne Centre will implement a mandatory curfew for teens starting Dec. 26, according to our news partners at WCPO-TV.

During “Parental Guidance Required” hours, those under 18 will not be allowed to walk through Kenwood Towne Centre, its parking lots or exterior walkways without a guardian.

One adult can accompany up to four young people, though there is no limit for the number of children under 10 that one adult can accompany, mall officials said Thursday. The adult must remain with them at all times.

Mall officials said security officers will be checking identifications, and those who show proper identification proving they are 18 or over will be offered an optional wristband so as not to be pulled aside again.

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The “PGR” curfews will be in effect today after 4 p.m., Sunday after 2 p.m., Monday after 4 p.m. and Tuesday after 2 p.m.

Mall staff will make an announcement one hour before the curfew starts so anyone under 18 can finish shopping or dining.

This news outlet reached out Friday to several area retail properties about their policies, but most did not respond prior to deadline.

Liberty Center in Liberty Twp. referred to the policies portion of its website, which outlines discourteous, disorderly and disruptive behavior.

“As stated in our policies, any minor not accompanied by an adult can be asked to leave, or have their parents called, if violating Liberty Center’s conduct policy,” said Matthew Neu, Liberty Center’s assistant general manager.

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