During the month of February 2013, the Special Investigations Unit of the Contra Costa County Office of the Sheriff and the California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control conducted three decoy operations at establishments that sell alcohol throughout the county.
Detectives conducted two types of operations: Minor Decoy Program where the decoy enters a store and attempts to buy alcohol and Shoulder Tap where the minor decoy stands outside of a liquor store or market and asks adults to buy them alcohol. The minors are supervised by law enforcement.
Any person seen furnishing alcohol to the minor decoy is arrested (cited or booked) for furnishing alcohol to a minor. This is a violation of Section 25658(a) of the Business and Professions Code. Penalties can include fines of up to $1,000, community service and possible revocation of the alcohol license.
During the three operations a total of 44 establishments were visited. 17 adults were arrested for selling alcohol to a minor and four were arrested for buying alcohol for minors. In addition, one was a felony arrest for possession of meth, carrying a concealed weapon and possession of burglary tools.
These operations are part of the Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control’s Minor Decoy/Shoulder Tap Grant Project, funded by the California Office of Traffic Safety through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. More operations are being planned in Contra Costa County.