Covering Louisiana

Aug 14, 2014 1:21 PM by KATC

ATC issues almost 900 citations during summer crackdown

Agents with the state Office of Alcohol and Tobacco Control conducted 6,598 compliance checks during the agency's 2014 Summer Crackdown and issued 895 citations.

Of those citations, 505 were issued for alcohol sales to a minor and 390 were issued for tobacco sales to a minor.

Approximately 14 percent of businesses checked actually sold to minors.

During the three-month crackdown, ATC agents conducted more than double the number of compliance checks conducted during the summer of 2013.

The initiative is an attempt by ATC to follow through on its mission to prevent access of alcoholic beverages and tobacco products to underage persons. Statistics show an increase in teenage alcohol consumption during summer months.

"The fact we are using only 16 & 17 year old operatives and getting this many sales is concerning. Let me be clear, there is nothing good that can come out of selling alcohol to a minor. And if you do, ATC will hold you accountable," said Commissioner Troy Hebert. "This permit is a privilege, not a right.

Anyone caught selling or serving alcohol or tobacco products to minors are subject to criminal and administrative charges. Businesses face fines in the thousands of dollars and penalties that could result in suspension or revocation of their alcohol and tobacco permits.

In an attempt to help educate kids throughout the summer months, ATC agents and employees, including K-9 Ace, held nearly three dozen educational presentations statewide.

Agents spoke to approximately 2,500 children and adults throughout the state about the effects of early alcohol and tobacco use and the dangers of synthetic drugs. Presentations were given at summer camps, area YMCA facilities, city parks and organizational meetings.

To find out more information about the educational presentations, check out ATC website at www.atc.la.gov.

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