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6 Liquor Stores Fined in Keg Law Violations

November 09, 1996|DARRELL SATZMAN

The owners of six San Fernando Valley liquor stores have agreed to pay fines for violating a state law designed to discourage teenage drinking parties by keeping track of who buys beer kegs, the Department of Alcohol Beverage Control said.

The fines stem from a sting operation conducted by the Los Angeles Police Department in July as part of Operation ABC, a program funded by a $100,000 grant from the ABC to fight alcohol-related crime.

"Strict adherence to the keg registration law is necessary to prevent the furnishing of beer to persons under 21 years of age, and hopefully to reduce the number of drunk driving-related arrests and accidents involving teenagers," said LAPD Sgt. Kris Pitcher in a written statement.

Gov. Pete Wilson signed the legislation, known as the "kegger law," in May 1994 to reduce minors' access to beer.

The law requires retailers selling keg beer to place an information tag on the kegs. Keg purchasers must sign their name on a receipt. Both measures make it easier for law enforcement agencies to trace the alcohol if it is sold or given to minors.

By agreeing to pay the fines--which can range from $750 to $6,000 depending on the amount of alcohol sold in a particular store--the owners avoided five-to-15-day suspensions of their liquor licenses.

The owner of a seventh store filed an appeal that is being processed, said ABC spokesman Carl DeWing.

The seven stores cited in the July sweep are Northridge Liquor, Continental Liquor and Dale's Jr. Mart in Northridge; Oaks Liquor in Sun Valley; Balboa Discount Liquor in North Hills; Circus Liquor in Sylmar, and Devonshire Liquors in Mission Hills.

The owners of Devonshire Liquors have appealed their citation and have not agreed to pay a fine.

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