Fresno County Sheriff’s Office Begins Operations Funded by Alcoholic Beverage Control Grant


Fresno, July 2 (Punjab Mail)  The California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) has awarded portions of a $3 million grant to the Fresno County Sheriff’s Office and 50 other law enforcement agencies throughout California. Members of the Sheriff’s Special Investigations Division (SID) will put these funds to use by performing a number of compliance operations throughout the County of Fresno from July 2020 through June 2021.
One tactic implemented to target problem locations is known as a “Minor Decoy” operation. This is where detectives are assisted by a minor, usually 18 or 19 years old, who is instructed to enter retail liquor stores or restaurants and attempt to purchase an alcoholic beverage. If a sale is made to an underage decoy, the clerk is cited and the business owner can receive disciplinary action from ABC. The punishment can include fines, ABC license suspension or revocation. The business can also be the subject of civil action from the District Attorney’s Office and receive fines for violations of unfair business practice laws.
Another tactic is a “Shoulder Tap” operation, which targets adults who purchase alcohol for people less than 21 years of age. A minor under the direct supervision of a peace officer will stand outside a liquor or convenience store and ask patrons to buy them alcohol. The minor indicates in some way he or she is underage and cannot purchase the alcohol. If the adult agrees to purchase alcohol for the minor, agents then arrest and cite them for furnishing alcohol to the minor. The penalty for furnishing alcohol to a minor is a minimum $1,000 fine and 24 hours of community service.
Detectives may also conduct undercover operations at large local events such as Fresno State football games, concerts and fairs where alcohol is being served to identify minors consuming alcohol or adults providing alcohol to minors.
Detectives may contact on-sale and off-sale locations and conduct Informed Merchants Preventing Alcohol-Related Crime Tendencies (IMPACT) inspections.
The Alcohol Policing Partnership (APP) Program was started in 1995 by the ABC. Its goal is to broaden and increase the level of alcoholic beverage enforcement by working in partnership with cities and counties through a grant assistance project. It works with law enforcement agencies to develop an effective, comprehensive and strategic approach to eliminating the crime and public nuisance issues associated with problematic alcoholic beverage outlets.
Education of retailers and their employees is another facet of the APP. This is where detectives host Licensee Education on Alcohol and Drug (LEAD) classes & community outreach sessions, which typically result in hundreds of attendees at those classes. Both of these education programs are designed as prevention strategies as a prelude to enforcement action. Education and prevention measures are aimed at institutionalizing responsible serving and selling practices in the industry.
Funding for this program was provided by a grant from the California Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) through the Department’s APP. ABC