Oconee County Sheriff’s Office Narcotics Agents Issues Citations for Alcohol Sales to Those under 21
(Walhalla, SC)--------------------------------------Narcotics Agents from the Special Operations Bureau have issued multiple citations recently in regards to the sale of alcoholic beverages to those under the age of 21.
Underage confidential informants, working at the direction of Sheriff’s Office, made controlled purchases of alcoholic beverages from six convenience stores and two liquor stores located inside of Oconee County. The citations were issued in March and April of this year.
Clerks that worked inside of the convenience stores and the liquor stores that sold the alcoholic beverages were issued citations for sale of alcoholic beverages to someone under the age of 21. In six of the cases, the underage confidential informant purchased beer. In the two investigations involving liquor stores, the underage confidential informant purchased liquor (brandy in one instance and bourbon in another instance).
Narcotics Agents conduct random checks on a monthly basis, with the goal of preventing stores from selling alcoholic beverages to underage patrons. The Sheriff’s Office has had an ongoing partnership with A.E.T. (Alcohol Enforcement Team) to further this effort.
April is also Alcohol Awareness Month and South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster issued a Governor’s Proclamation. According to the Proclamation, from 2009 to 2019, 6,038 drivers under the age of 21 were involved in alcohol-related traffic crashes in South Carolina, which comes out to an average of 549 drivers per year.
The Proclamation also states that, according to preliminary traffic crash numbers from 2020, 354 drivers under the age of 21 were involved in alcohol-related traffic crashes in South Carolina.
“Law enforcement has a duty to protect our citizens, but especially those who are considered our most vulnerable,” says Oconee County Sheriff Mike Crenshaw. “Recently, we issued a news release regarding the availability to our youth and teens of THC Gummies. Today, we wanted to issue this release to let our citizens know that we are enforcing the laws as it pertains to the selling and purchasing of alcoholic beverages by those under the age of 21. We encourage all businesses and establishments that sell alcoholic beverages to card all those who wish to purchase alcohol from you. The Sheriff’s Office will issue citations to employees who sell alcoholic beverages to those under the age of 21.”