Shoulder Tap Operation: Truckee PD targets adults providing alcohol to minors |

Shoulder Tap Operation: Truckee PD targets adults providing alcohol to minors

Three people were arrested on Sept. 17 as a result of the California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control’s “Decoy Shoulder Tap Operation,” targeted at adults supplying alcohol to minors.

In the program, a minor under 21 stands outside a market, liquor or convenience store – under direct supervision of an ABC investigator – and “shoulder taps,” or asks an adult to buy alcohol for him or her. The decoy has to indicate he or she is a minor and if the adult buys alcohol, the ABC investigators will arrest him or her.

“It’s an ongoing investigation by the ABC,” said Cmdr. Scott Berry of the Truckee Police. “They go to various locations and do this investigation because it’s prevalent in California.”

The three people – caught in front of Safeway, Albertson’s and 7-11 – for allegedly furnishing alcohol to minors and Berry said all three were cited and released.

Berry said the Yuba City office of the ABC chose Truckee to host the program and Truckee gladly agreed. He added that it was important for people to realize they can get into trouble for furnishing alcohol to a minor.

According to a press release from the town, the California State Legislature recently upped the minimum fine for furnishing alcohol to minors from a $250 fine to a $1,000 fine, plus 24 hours of community service.

The press release also says the ABC and the Truckee Police Department will continue their efforts to combat “the underage drinking problem in Truckee.”

The ABC’s Web site says a decoy program has been upheld as legal and not entrapment by the California Supreme Court. Also, local agencies like the Truckee Police are allowed to use decoys.

There are rules, however. The Web site says a decoy must be under 20 years old and appear to be under 21. In addition, the decoy cannot lie about his or her age or carry a fake ID.

For more information on the Alcoholic Beverage Control or its shoulder tap program, visit

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