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Selma Police

SELMA – Two adults were arrested after purchasing alcohol for the minor decoys after the Selma Police participated in a Shoulder Tap Operation in conjunction with the State Alcoholic Beverage Control on May 18, according to a Selma PD press release.

In such an operation, minor decoys contacted several adults and asked them to purchase alcohol for them at various alcoholic establishments located in Selma.

Two adults purchased the alcohol for the minors and were arrested. One had an active Fresno County no bail warrant for DUI. This subject was transported the Fresno County Jail for detainment. The other adult was released with a promise to release.

In 1994, the California Supreme Court ruled that minor decoys could be used by law enforcement to check whether stores were selling alcohol to minors or persons under age 21.

At that time, the violation rate was nearly 50 percent. In some cities, almost one out of every two stores failed to check a minor’s age and sold them alcohol.

In 1997, the violation rate had dropped to less than 10 percent in those cities that used the Minor Decoy Program on a regular basis. Minors then turned to what’s called the shoulder tap method of getting alcohol by standing outside of a liquor store or market and asking adults to buy them alcohol. A survey conducted by the Los Angeles Police Department indicated that as much as 46 percent of all minors who attempt to acquire alcohol use this method.

The Decoy Shoulder Tap Program is an enforcement program that ABC and local law enforcement agencies use to detect and deter shoulder tap activity. During the program, a minor decoy, under the direct supervision of law enforcement officers, solicits adults outside ABC licensed stores to buy the minor decoy alcohol. Any person seen furnishing alcohol to the minor decoy is arrested and is either cited or booked for furnishing alcohol to a minor.

This project is part of the Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control’s Minor Decoy/Shoulder Tap Grant Project, funded by the California Office of Traffic Safety through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

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