Viewpoint: Obey the alcohol law! - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Viewpoint: Obey the alcohol law!

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Six police officers and two teens were involved in an undercover sting operation, March 8th, to see if stores in Dougherty County would sell alcohol to under aged buyers.

 The numbers are startling. 11 out of 18 stores in Dougherty County sold beer to a 17 or 18 year-old. That's 61 percent-  a number officials say is just too high.

ADDU Major Bill Berry said, "We've run these four years ago and we were down into the 30 percent averages. About one out of every third store that we checked we would have a sale. But this is just not acceptable."

Two of the stores even sold the beer after looking at the teen's ID. The owner at the Quikmart on Sylvester Road, checked it TWICE.

District Attorney Greg Edwards says the cases will be brought to court, and says this sting operation shows authorities they need to ramp up efforts to get alcohol out of the hands of young people.

It makes you wonder if the penalties for underage sales are high enough, since so many are willing to take the chance on breaking the law?

 "That's why it's very important that every step be taken to maintain the integrity of beer and alcohol sales. And that's why we're going to continue these operations and prosecute those folks that violate the law," said Edwards.

Commander Berry says his agency will do these checks on a more regular basis. We commend him for recognizing the seriousness of this crime, and for taking steps to bring the lawbreakers to justice.

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