“A successful operation is when no citations are issued and every adult approached says ‘no’ they will not purchase alcohol for someone under 21. Purchasing alcohol for those under 21 puts people at risk and is against the law.” – CSLEA President Alan Barcelona
MENLO PARK — On February 19, 2023, California Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) agents and Menlo Park police officers arrested/issued six citations for furnishing alcoholic beverages to someone under the age of 21, during an undercover operation
The ABC agents and Menlo Park police officers conducted a decoy shoulder tap operation which targets adults who purchase alcohol for people less than 21 years of age. Under the program, a person under 21, under the direct supervision of a peace officer, stands outside a liquor or convenience store and ask patrons to buy him/her alcohol. The decoy indicates that he or she cannot purchase the alcohol because he/she is not yet 21.
If someone agrees to purchase alcohol for the decoy, agents then arrest and cite them for furnishing alcohol to someone under 21. The penalty for furnishing alcohol to someone under 21 is a minimum $1,000 fine and 24 hours of community service.
The program is intended to reduce the availability of alcohol to minors. Statistics show they generally have a higher rate of drunk driving crashes than adults. Studies also show that when youth are able to access alcohol, the chance of criminal activities increase. According to the American Medical Association, underage drinking can increase chances of risky sexual behavior and teen pregnancy, juvenile delinquency, compromise health, and result in unintentional injury and death.