|NEWPORT BEACH – When California Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) agents teamed with Newport Beach Police detectives to conduct a decoy operation on November 223, 2016, they discovered it wasn’t very difficult for someone under the age of 21 to purchase alcohol at some restaurants.
Under the direct supervision of ABC agents and NBPD, decoys under the age of 21 attempted to purchase alcoholic beverages from 12 different stores or restaurants. The decoys were successful in purchasing alcohol at five establishments:
Clerks or servers at seven other businesses refused to sell alcohol to the underage decoys.
“There is a huge responsibility for clerks and servers to be certain they are not selling alcoholic beverages to young people under the age of 21,” said California Statewide Law Enforcement Association (CSLEA) President Alan Barcelona. “ABC agents and local law enforcement officers conduct these decoy operations to press that point home. Underage drinking can lead to accidents, injuries, assaults, and other unlawful and dangerous behavior.
Those who sell alcoholic beverages to minors face a fine of $250 and/or 24-32 hours of community service for a first violation. In addition, ABC can take administrative action against the alcoholic beverage license belonging to the businesses where the sales to minors occurred. Possible repercussions include fines, suspension of the establishment’s liquor license, or the permanent revocation of the license.
The City of Newport Beach has more than 438 active retailers with ABC licenses.