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A statewide undercover operation has left hundreds of people facing misdemeanor charges and a fine of up to $1,000 for buying alcohol for minors.
69 agencies, including the Watsonville Police Department, took part in the pre-holiday “Shoulder Tap” operation on March 9th.
In Watsonville, our minor decoys asked 64 people to buy them alcohol at 22 different licensed businesses across the city. Out of the 64 approached, 49 of them refused to purchase alcohol. However, officers arrested and cited 15 people for providing alcohol to minors.
One of the arrestees also had cocaine and methamphetamine. All drugs were seized by our officers.
The goal of this operation was to reduce underage drinking, increase public safety but also send a strong message to adults who buy alcohol for minors about the major repercussions.
All individuals cited face a misdemeanor charge and a fine of up to $1,000.
Statewide, the operation resulted in 325 people buying alcohol for minors. Agents from the California Department of Alcohol Beverage Control (ABC) also wrote 14 citations for open containers and 16 people were booked into jail for various crimes.
Since 2012, officers and agents have cited or arrested nearly 3,500 individuals during the Statewide Shoulder Tap Operation.
Here are the results from previous years provided by ABC: