Sacto 9-1-1
March 18, 2013
Buying-alcohol-for-minors sting nets 506 arrests in California

Agents from the California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control, in cooperation with more than 100 law enforcement agencies, conducted a record-setting statewide decoy "shoulder-tap" operation.

The task force operation was conducted Friday and resulted in 506 arrests statewide, surpassing last year's record of 435 arrests, according to a department news release. More than 400 individuals were cited for furnishing alcoholic beverages to minors, and at least 50 were arrested for other crimes such as illegal drugs, illegal gun possession, public drunkenness, parole violations and outstanding warrants, officials said.

Arrests in the Sacramento region included nine in Sacramento, four in Rancho Cordova, two in Folsom, six in Marysville, 11 in Placer County and 16 in Nevada County, according to the news release.

This was the second time the operation had been conducted statewide.

A decoy shoulder tap operation can lead to the arrest of adults who purchase alcohol for people younger than 21. Under the program, a minor under the direct supervision of a peace officer stands outside a liquor or convenience store and asks patrons to buy alcohol for him or her. The minor indicates in some way that he or she is underage and cannot purchase the alcohol.

If the adults agree to make the purchase, officers arrest and cite them for furnishing alcohol to the minor. The penalty is a minimum $1,000 fine and 24 hours of community service.

The program is intended to reduce the availability of alcohol to minors.

Officials cite American Medical Association findings that underage drinking can increase chances of risky sexual behavior and teen pregnancy, juvenile delinquency, compromise health and result in unintentional injury and death.

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