Ordinance against sagged pants proposed

The Maroon

HOUMA, La. (AP) – Terrebonne residents can comment April 10 before the Parish Council takes a final vote on a proposal to impose fines for anyone caught wearing pants that sag below the waist in public.

The Courier reported the council voted 8-1 March 25 to advance the proposed ordinance.

The ordinance, if approved, will prohibit men and women from wearing clothing in public that exposes an “inappropriate” amount of skin or underwear “for the purpose of public decency.”

Lafourche Parish already has an ordinance that makes it illegal for anyone to reveal underwear or to dress in a way that is deemed “unbecoming of his or her sex.” Forty-five people have been ticketed in the law’s five-year existence.

Terrebonne Councilman John Navy, made it clear that it would mimic an ordinance already in place in Shreveport, though no differences between the Lafourche Parish mandate and the Shreveport mandate were specified.

Parish Attorney Courtney Alcock said she spoke with Shreveport’s city attorney, who told her the ordinance had been enforced and prosecuted 376 times since 2007.

“Most people plead guilty and it has not been challenged,” she said.

Council Chairwoman Beryl Amedee said she will not support the ordinance, questioning whether it unduly restricts people’s constitutional rights.