“I agree with what you’re (Councilwoman Joyce Burges) trying to do, but I think it sends a bad message. It sends the message that if you’re going to have a function in Baker, you have to have police there.” Councilman Pete Heine
BAKER — For-profit groups holding events for young people under age 17 could be required to obtain permits from the city, if Baker adopts a proposal from Councilwoman Joyce Burges.
Part of the requirement should be certified security, whether Baker police officers or some other form of security approved by the city, Burges said at Tuesday’s council meeting.
The proposal is in response to the shootings at Baker Civic Club in March that claimed the lives of Marcell Franklin, 15; Kendal Dorsey, 15; and Diontrey Claiborne, 18.
Javaughn Simmons, 19, also was shot, but survived.
Baker police booked accused shooter Nakeydran L. Williams, 16, on three counts of first-degree murder, one count of attempted first-degree murder and one count of illegal use of a weapon.
During Tuesday’s meeting, Baker Civic Club president Hazel Mitchell pointed out that her organization is nonprofit and would not be affected by the proposed ordinance.
“I agree with what you’re trying to do, but I think it sends a bad message. It sends the message that if you’re going to have a function in Baker, you have to have police there,” Councilman Pete Heine said.
City Attorney Ken Fabre pointed out that there might be constitutional issues with such a permit requirement and that the city would have to be careful about the way the proposed ordinance would be written.
Burges also informed the council that there is a law in Baker prohibiting baggy pants. The 2008 ordinance reads in part: “It shall be unlawful for any person to appear in public wearing pants below the waist which expose the skin or undergarments.”
A first-time offense is punishable by a fine of up to $100 and up to eight hours of community service.
Baker parent Greg Green has volunteered to coordinate an effort to mentor young men on this issue, Burges said.
“I believe they are doing this for attention. I also think they believe they have no hope for the future,” she said.