Challenge brewing to Camden’s business curfew

Camden’s City Council has voted to impose a curfew that would close businesses at 11 pm Sunday through Thursday, and by midnight Friday and Saturday.  Now a group of business owners plan to sue.Longtime Camden activist Frank Fulbrook said he will file the lawsuit in the next few weeks.  He said it will likely include the owners of a Chinese food restaurant, a gas station, and a Crown Fried Chicken restaurant.  “The Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which is incorporated into the state Constitution in New Jersey, bars any kind of arbitrary discrimination based on race, nationality,” said Fulbrook.  “In this case, 95 percent of the businesses that would be harmed by this ordinance are Asian owned.”Fulbrook has fought the city’s curfew efforts before, and prevailed in court.The City Attorney for Camden, Marc Riondino, said it’s different this time because the legislation has specific exceptions for gas stations and emergency services such as pharmacies.  Riondino said many residents and businesses support the curfew as a way to crack down on crime that happens near businesses that are open late.

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