Growing up, every child's favorite part of Halloween is trick or treating. Going around a community with your friends, asking neighbors for tasty treats and hoping they hand out full size candy bars or goody bags. One North Carolina town, however, has a city ordinance that limited the pastime to certain age groups or else some kids could face jail time. Now, city leaders are changing the law.
The haunted holiday tradition was up for debate at a Whiteville city council meeting on Tuesday night (October 12), where discussions were held concerning the old-school law, WRAL reports. Under the ordinance, children over the age of 12 were not allowed to trick or treat or else they could be charged with a misdemeanor and potentially face a $50 fine or up to 30 days in jail. The ordinance also stated that trick or treating could not be done after 8:30 p.m.
"The city does not try to regulate other floating holidays," staff said, raising the question, "why is the city trying to regulate Halloween?"
In the end, it was determined the ordinance violated the First Amendment and would likely not hold up in court. The city decided to issue safety guidelines for trick or treating, saying that only children 16 and under can participate and advising parents to supervise.