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7/28/2014

Twenty-five of 28 Local Retailers Pass Alcohol Compliance Checks

7/28/2014

Over the past several months, the Freeport Police Department and the Illinois State Police, District 16, conducted compliance checks among businesses licensed to sell alcoholic beverages in the Freeport community. Retailers were notified by letter prior to the enforcement about the upcoming compliance checks.

Law enforcement followed standard procedures for conducting compliance checks: Underage youth worked with law enforcement to attempt to make an illegal purchase of alcohol. Twenty-eight area businesses were checked, with 25 retailers refusing to sell to underage buyers who were working with law enforcement.

We want to commend the following businesses that demonstrated responsible alcohol sales during our compliance checks: Aldi's; Applebee's Neighborhood Grill; Cannova's Pizza; Cimino's Little Italy; CVS Pharmacy #8533 and #8540; Eilert's; Express Lane Gas & Food Mart on South West Avenue; Freeport Mobil; Fiesta En Cancun Authentic Mexican Restaurant; Logan's Bar & Grill; Manny's Pizza & Tacos; Pizza Hut on Willard Avenue and Galena Avenue; Pretzel City Pub; Road Ranger; Shawnee Tap; Sullivan's Foods; Sunshine Liquors; Super Pantry #38 & #49; This Is It Eatery; Walgreen's on Galena Avenue and West Avenue; and Walmart Supercenter #1740.

The businesses that did fail were issued a Notice to Appear for failing to comply with the state's alcohol laws as it relates to serving alcohol to underage youth and the penalties serving/selling causes. Compliance checks are conducted because research has shown that they are an effective strategy in reducing underage drinking. We want to reduce underage drinking because we know it contributes to car crashes, injuries, unwanted sexual encounters, vandalism, theft, addiction, sexually transmitted diseases, and death by alcohol poisoning. By themselves, compliance checks will not eliminate youth access to alcohol, but when combined with a comprehensive community approach, they can help keep alcohol out of the hands of youth.

In support of compliance checks, responsible server trainings, BASSET, are offered in the community free of charge to any liquor license holder. BASSET is an education program for alcohol servers and sellers. The goal is to provide insight and awareness to the serious issues of irresponsible sales and service of alcohol, while at the same time teaching the professional skills and techniques needed to properly identify problems and effectively intervene.

Also during the time period of April through June of 2014, five Party Patrol Details were conducted by the Freeport Police Department and the Illinois State Police, District 16. Zero citations were issued to youth under the age of 21 as a result of the Party Patrol. Party Patrols are a concerted effort in a community to seek out and monitor areas where parties or underage drinking may occur and focus on times or events at which underage drinking is prone to occur.