Grant will help Claremont, Upland police reduce alcohol-related harm

by Steven Felschundneff |

The California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control has awarded $48,575 to Claremont and Upland police departments to “reduce alcohol-related harm in their communities,” according to a news release from the Claremont police.

The grant is one of 50 issued by the agency as part of its Alcohol Policing Partnership program.

Claremont police Chief Aaron Fate was quoted in a press release as saying, “This is important to our communities in order to increase protection for youth and to address crime at problem locations.”

The Alcohol Policing Partnership program, which began in 1995, is designed to facilitate cooperation between state and local law enforcement with a goal of keeping alcohol away from minors and preventing harm to the community.

“The Alcohol Policing Partnership program can improve the quality of life in neighborhoods,” Alcoholic Beverage Control Director Joseph McCullough said in a statement. “We’ve seen a real difference in the communities where the grant program’s resources have been invested.”

“During the grant period, ABC’s Special Operations Unit and other ABC enforcement personnel work with the grant agencies and the community to identify problem alcohol outlets. The Alcohol Policing Partnership Program Unit then target problem outlets for investigation,” read a statement on the Alcoholic Beverage Control department’s website.

The funds are used for both educational and training purposes as well as enforcement, according to Claremont police lieutenant David Hardin.

Alcoholic Beverage Control officials provide training on alcohol related laws and ABC sponsored programs. Educational training is also provided to business owners and their staff regarding responsible serving practices and alcohol related laws.

“We also conduct non-enforcement inspections at ABC licensed businesses to make them aware of any violations or ABC regulations that are not in compliance,” Hardin wrote in an email.

The enforcement strategies include “shoulder tap” operations where a minor decoy will approach a customer walking into an ABC licensed business and tell them they are not 21 years old, and then ask the person to purchase alcohol for them. Adults caught in this enforcement detail could be arrested and charged with misdemeanor furnishing alcohol to a minor.

In another type of enforcement detail the minor decoy will attempt to purchase alcohol at an ABC licensed business and if they succeed that business could face serious consequences.

“A first time sale may result in a fine or license suspension,” according to the Alcoholic Beverage Control website. “A second sale to a minor within a three year period is an automatic license suspension. A third sale to a minor within a three year period may result in license revocation.”

“The Department also conducts uniformed patrols and undercover operations at problematic ABC licensed establishments and problem areas in the city that produce repeat calls for service,” Hardin wrote in an email. “All of the enforcement operations are conducted to reduce the availability of alcoholic beverages to minors.”


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