Covington delays discussion of 'sagging pants' ban

The Covington City Council was scheduled to debate Monday night whether to pass a public indecency ordinance that would regulate the wearing of baggy pants, but the item was taken off the agenda until a later date, Channel 2 Action News reported.

The Newton County city would join numerous other metro Atlanta cities if it passes the ordinance.

Forest Park approved an ordinance last month. Violators there can face up to a $1,000 fine. Last year Hampton, in Henry County, also started enforcing a ban on sagging pants.

Jonesboro's ordinance, passed last August, stipulates that anyone who wears pants, shorts or skirts more than 3 inches below their hips can be cited for “disorderly conduct” and fined.

Covington Mayor Ronnie Johnston voiced concerns about the legality of such an ordinance at a recent council meeting, according to the Newton Citizen newspaper.

Councilwoman Hawnethia Williams agreed, saying the law could lead to allegations of profiling, according to the newspaper.

But Councilman Chris Smith, who proposed the ordinance, said at the meeting that he didn't see it as profiling, according to the Citizen. 

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