Four people were arrested by Davis police Friday, accused of furnishing an alcoholic beverage to a minor.
The arrests occurred as part of a decoy “shoulder tap” operation targeting adults who purchase alcohol for people younger than 21 years old. The program involves a minor, under the direct supervision of a peace officer, who stands outside a liquor or convenience store and asks patrons to buy alcohol for the youth. The minor indicates in some way that he or she is underage and cannot purchase the alcohol.
If the adults agree to purchase alcohol for the minor, officers arrest and cite them. The penalty for providing alcohol to a minor is a minimum $1,000 fine and 24 hours of community service, according to a Police Department news release.
Friday’s operation was conducted at three ABC-licensed off-sale establishments.
The decoy shoulder tap program is intended to reduce the availability of alcohol to minors, who statistics show generally have a higher rate of drunken driving crashes than adults. Police also cited American Medical Association reports that underage drinking can increase chances of risky sexual behavior, teen pregnancy and juvenile delinquency, as well as compromise health, and result in unintentional injury and death.
The project is part of the state Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control Minor Decoy and Shoulder Tap Decoy Program grant, funded by the California Office of Traffic Safety through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.