From 14 September, the Copenhagen Police will establish four ‘nightlife zones’, from which those who have committed certain types of crime will be banned during the night.
The four zones cover the areas around Gothersgade, Vestergade, Vesterbrogade and Kødbyen. Violations of the law that can result in a nightlife ban are involved in vandalism, knives, handguns, weapons and explosives.
“The four areas have been chosen because they all have a high concentration of pubs, which attract many people. Precisely these streets also see more criminal acts and violent incidents than elsewhere in the nightlife, ”explained Anne Tønnes from the Copenhagen Police.
Entrance ban 24:00 – 05:00
Specifically, a ban on entering bars, pubs, clubs and restaurants or “moving around” in the nightlife zones between midnight and 5am.
The foundation for the initiative was laid on July 1, 2021, when a law was enacted that made it possible to ban certain offenders from restaurants and bars during the night.
The law also specified a ban on ‘nightlife zones’ – but it is only now that these zones have been specifically defined. Violation of the ban results in a fine of 10,000 kroner: Twice or more will result in 30 days in prison.
Only purposefully convicted criminals
Tønnes emphasized that “for the ordinary, law-abiding citizen, the nightlife zones have no practical significance”, but are only purposefully convicted criminals.
“Nightlife zones are a tool to increase security in the nightlife. By preventing people with a proven violent crime from entering the zones at certain times, we can help deter potential further violations. ”
“It can also help reassure victims of violence that their assailant is not allowed to move freely in these busy nightlife areas,” she said.
The Minister of Justice, Nick Hækkerup, also expressed his support for the scheme.
“Before the corona, we saw several horrific episodes in which innocent young people were assaulted in popular nightlife areas, including in Gothersgade. There is absolutely no room for that, ”he said.
“Now that we are reopening, the four zones will help make it safer for victims of violence and everyone else to go out on the streets of Copenhagen at night,” he said.
The four nightlife zones are valid until 13 September 2023. Two years – with the possibility of extension – is the standard duration, but the police can establish nightlife zones for shorter periods in connection with, for example, a festival or other events.
You can see maps and a more detailed description of the four nightlife zones here.
Source: The Nordic Page