On March 18th, 2013

ABC Agents At Work: Record-Breaking Statewide Shoulder Tap Operation

Congratulations to our California Statewide Law Enforcement Association (CSLEA) members who are agents with the California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) for a successful and record-breaking statewide shoulder tap operation Friday, March 15.

ABC agents and local law enforcement officers teamed up to combat underage drinking.  The results?  Agents and officers arrested 506 people compared 435 during the same type of operation this time last year.  Most of the 506 were cited for furnishing alcoholic beverages to minors.  Of the 506, 50 were arrested on other charges including drug offenses, illegal gun possession, parole violations, warrants or public drunkenness.

"Five hundred  people willing to buy booze for kids under the age of 21," said CSLEA President Alan Barcelona.  "ABC agents recognize the danger associated with providing alcoholic beverages to the under-21 set.  Those under 21 and under the influence of alcohol have an increased risk of injury, accidents and death."

Under the watchful eyes of ABC agents and local officers,  decoys under the age of 21 stood  outside  stores and asked patrons to buy them alcohol.  The decoys indicated they were underage and could not  purchase the alcohol themselves.

When adults purchased to alcohol, ABC agents and local officers moved in for the arrests. 

"It is always an honor and pleasure to work hand in hand with our colleagues from other law enforcement agencies in keeping alcohol from minors and holding accountable those who would furnigh to minors," said Steve Combre, vice president of the California Association of State Investigators (CASI) and ABC agent.  

Statewide, 3,157 adults were contacted to make the illegal alcohol purchases. The penalty for furnishing alcohol to a minor is a minimum $1,000 and 24 hours of community service.

"We've moved from St. Patrick's Day weekend right into spring break for many college campuses," said Barcelona.   "While we want young people to enjoy this spring tradition, we hope they play it safe.   We are encouraged by the work of ABC agents  to keep alcoholic beverages out of the hands of those under 21." 

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