Undercover Sting Catches LB Stores Selling to Minors

In a sweep of 21 businesses, teenage decoys were able to buy booze on a number of attempts, under Long Beach police and ABC direction, police said Wednesday.

Teenagers used as decoys at 20 liquor sales businesses were able to buy alcohol seven times from merchants on Tuesday in Long Beach, and at another location, three of 14 adults bought booze for minors, police said Wednesday.

Ten misdemeanor citations were issued during a wide sweep of liquor-selling establishments with minors under direction from Long Beach Police Department and Alcohol Beverage Control (ABC) undercover investigators.

In 20 attempts by teens at merchants in Long Beach, they were able to buy sevent times, a Long Beach Police Department statement announced. At a second business, 14 tries to buy booze yielded three succesful purchases in which the youth approached an adult outside who agreed to go make the buy, police said. The full press release follows:

The Long Beach Police Department's Vice Investigations Section, in cooperation with investigators from the Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC), conducted two undercover operations throughout the City of Long Beach on Tuesday, January 22, 2013.

The "Minor Decoy" operation focused on employees and the “Shoulder Tap” operation focused on customers of ABC licensed businesses such as liquor or convenience stores. Minors under the age of 21, under the supervision of the L.B.P.D., either approached employees and attempted to purchase alcohol or approached customers outside the venue and requested alcohol be purchased on their behalf.  

Employees, who allowed the minor to purchase alcohol, and customers, who purchased alcohol for minors, were identified and subsequently issued misdemeanor citations for unlawfully furnishing alcohol to a minor. The businesses were unaware that an undercover operation was underway.

During the course of the “Minor Decoy” operation, 20 establishments were visitedresulting in seven citations being issued to employees for selling alcohol to a minor.  The seven misdemeanor citations were issued in the following areas:


800 block of East Anaheim Street                1800 block of East Anaheim Street

2200 block of East Anaheim Street              5600 block of Paramount Blvd    

2900 block of Santa Fe Avenue                    2300 block of East South Street  


During the “Shoulder Tap” operation, 14 customers were contacted outside an establishment in the 400 block of Long Beach Blvd resulting in three citations being issued to customers for furnishing alcohol to a minor.

These operations are conducted with the community’s safety in mind.  The L.B.P.D. will continue to enforce ABC laws at all establishments throughout the city and wants to remind everyone that there are consequences for contributing to the delinquency of a minor.

Anyone wishing to report illegal behavior relating to the unlawful sale of alcohol should contact the Vice Investigations Section at (562) 570-7219.  Anyone wishing to remain anonymous may call 1-800-222-TIPS (8477), or text TIPLA plus your tip to 274637 (CRIMES), or visit www.LACrimeStoppers.org.


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