Archive for Friday, October 2, 1998

CITATIONS ISSUED IN UNDERAGE LIQUOR CRACKDOWN

October 2, 1998

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The state issued formal citations to seven Lawrence businesses allegedly in violation of sales to minors.

Seven businesses in Lawrence were issued first-offense citations Thursday by the state for illegally allowing minors to possess or consume alcohol.

Three bars and one liquor store in Manhattan also were hit with citations from Alcoholic Beverage Control, the agency responsible for monitoring 2,000 state-licensed bars and liquor stores.

Infractions were detected in an August sweep by ABC agents. Thirty-eight people were arrested in Lawrence during the raids, but names of businesses allegedly violating state law couldn't be released until formal citations were drafted.

Officially cited by ABC with a single offense each: Bleachers, Bottleneck, Brown Bear Brewery, Coco Loco Mexican Cafe, Fatso's, Granada and Red Lyon Tavern.

``They have the right to appeal,'' said Sheila Walker, spokesperson for ABC.

Under a penalty structure instituted July 1, the sanction for a first offense is ABC alcohol enforcement training for employees or a license suspension for one weekday.

Penalties increase with each subsequent offense. The new structure stipulates a license could be permanently revoked after the ninth offense.

Violators in Manhattan had multiple infractions. Lucky Brewgrille was charged with six citations and KJ's Dance Club had five citations for allowing minors to possess or consume alcohol.

If Lucky Brewgrille were to lose subsequent appeals, total fines would be $3,400 and its license would be suspended nine weekend days (Friday or Saturday).

In addition, Manhattan's Blue Rib-N Barbecue -- which recently opened a restaurant in Lawrence -- was cited for allowing a minor to possess or consume alcohol. Franz, White & Zanella retail liquor store was cited for selling to a minor.

Walker said local businesses ought to be on their toes.

``It wouldn't be out of the ordinary for us to make another visit,'' she said.

She said ABC's fine structure was intended to increase the overall compliance of licensees during bar and store checks from 65 percent as of July 1 to 90 percent within four years. The rate has improved to about 80 percent, she said.

``That's very encouraging,'' she said. ``Whether or not that is going to hold is another question.''

Infractions are expunged record after 48 months, Walker said.

ABC timed raids to coincide with return of students to Kansas University, Haskell Indian Nations University and Kansas State University. Six agents checked 18 bars in Lawrence on Friday and Saturday nights.

-- Tim Carpenter's phone message number is 832-7155. His e-mail address is tcarpenter@ljworld.com.

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