Ocean City cracks down on unruly behavior in effort to avoid repeat of Memorial Day weekend teen violence

Safety is at the top of mind after Memorial Day weekend was marred by violence in several Jersey shore locations.

Ocean City officials are now vowing to crack down on unruly visitors.

Strolling along the boardwalk in the evening, the first thing people notice on a beautiful Friday night is the sight of a lot of uniformed police, biking and walking along with the crowds.

For many parents who came with children, they say it’s a comforting sight after the summer season started with a 15-year-old stabbed and crowds of unruly teens.


Teen stabbed, arrests made as teen crowds cause chaos on Ocean City boardwalk: officials

A night on the boardwalk took a violent turn when police say a 15-year-old boy became the victim of a stabbing in one of several incidents that kicked off Memorial Day weekend.

As sunshine became sunset and after seeing the troubles last weekend, some former teenagers were reminiscing and remembering their own tamer trouble-making times at the shore.

"It was party central. We were in Wildwood and that was really party central," Marie Lesutis commented.

While weekend number two of the 2024 summer season is just beginning, the crowd seemed as perfectly behaved on the boardwalk and the beaches as the weather.

Resident Reider Winter stated, "I live right here on 8th Street and saw all the kids running down after the activity. It was a little crazy."


It’s been family-friendly Friday in the Cape May County community with families creating memories, while parents watched brave family members – a 15 and 13-year-old – dip their toes in the 65 degree water.

"What’s the number one fear? Sharks or the cold water?" asked FOX 29’s Steve Keeley.

"Sharks. Sharks and then the cold water," replied dad Anthony Pierce.

When asked about Memorial Day weekend’s craziness, mom Kerri Lee Pierce explained, "Kinda made me a little scared to come down here, but they wanted to come up here and figured if we keep an eye on them, we'd be good."

One of the noticeable boardwalk features is the intercom system reminding everyone of the 8 p.m. beach curfew. Other boardwalk rules include:

  • No backpacks on the boardwalk after 8 p.m.
  • 11 p.m. curfew for those under 18
  • Fines of up to $1,500 for anyone violating the curfew.

Presumably paid for by mom or dad.