Archive for Friday, September 28, 2007

Police target minors using alcohol

Educational initiative may have reduced game-day citations

September 28, 2007


Lawrence police and state agents moved into the neighborhoods surrounding Kansas University's Memorial Stadium last Saturday in a stepped-up effort to enforce liquor laws.

"Our goal was to reduce the flow of alcohol to minors," Police Sgt. Dan Ward said.

There were 84 citations issued for being a minor in possession of an alcoholic beverage.

Police and the Kansas Department of Revenue's Alcoholic Beverage Control also cited 33 people for consuming alcohol in public; seven adults for hosting minors at parties where they consumed alcohol; 15 for unlawful uses of driver's licenses; two for furnishing alcohol to minors; one for an open saloon; two for urinating in public; one for interfering with an officer; and two for obstructing official duty.

Before last week's KU football game, police spent three weeks distributing informational fliers to residents near the KU campus and training liquor store employees. The Regional Prevention Center of East Central Kansas also distributed information.

Ward thinks the educational initiative may have helped reduce the number of citations.

"When you look at how many people were breaking the law and how many thousands of people were in the area, the percentages aren't that bad," Ward said. "Numerous people we had contact with indicated they had gained the knowledge of what is against the law and what isn't."

But, Ward said the number of citations for minors in possession was a concern.

"So many things go wrong when minors drink," he said.

Ward noted that citations can be issued if people are found drinking on the sidewalk in front of their house or in the alley behind it as well as public streets and parking lots.

"That's a local and state law. It's been around for a long time," he said.

He also warned people hosting a party not to allow minors attending to possess or consume alcohol. State law in this case defines minors as anyone younger than 21. The minimum fine is $1,000, Ward said.

The enforcement effort was made possible by an underage liquor enforcement grant from the Kansas Department of Transportation, which was administered by ABC. The grant was used to pay overtime for police and ABC agents who worked. He estimated it cost $3,500. When resources allow, police may conduct enforcement again, Ward said.

Education about alcohol laws will continue in the community, he said. Police also will be checking liquor law compliance at bars, grocery and convenience stores. Underage youths recruited by police will go into the establishments and attempt to purchase alcoholic beverages.


4chewnut 10 years, 1 month ago

And apparently they had to bring in officers from Olathe. Please, these kids were wrong, but they weren't all the adults will be with the move of the game to KC.

acquarius 10 years, 1 month ago

Who makes these decisions ? With all the Meth labs and drug houses in this town I would think their time would be better spent busting those individuals. If anyone (I have) has had experience with the MIP is devastating to a youths life These kids, evan though they are breaking a law, are NOT criminals but they are now with MIP's on their records I'm also sure their parents would rather be able to spend their money on their educations rather than in the court systems and on attorneys Lets forcus our police efforts on drugs, guns and the homeless crazys that wander the streets and actually pose a threat to our communities safety Lets face it, its about the money they are able to make Take the average cost of an MIP x 84?

Paul Geisler 10 years, 1 month ago

Kansas.........the first state to adopt prohibition.......and the last state to end it! Imagine that.... a crackdown on underage drinking, and drinking in public (OMG, it might corrupt the puritans in the neighborhood!).

I'm quite certain my German-American ancestors would be outraged to think that young college-aged men and women aren't allowed to enjoy a few cold beers outside before a KU football game. (or wine, or liquor, etc.)

And those laws about public drinking, whether it be on your sidewalk, in your alley, in a public street, etc. are so archaic. In Columbia, MO you can walk into a liquor store, put a six-pack on the counter and ask for a bottle-opener! And then after paying for your beer you can open one up in the liquor store and start drinking it. (I was absolutely floored the first time I saw someone do this as I was raised in Topeka!) And then, OMG, you can actually walk out of the liquor store and wonder up and down the sidewalk of downtown Columbia drinking your beer without anyone batting an eye. And I don't recall reading too many stories about the problems that is causing them over there! Of course, we Kansas' folk don't have Anheuser Busch to influence our alcohol laws!

Besides, as other posts have mentioned, there are many other more worrisome issues the LPD should be addressing, i.e., domestic violence, meth labs, theft, vandalism, animal cruelty, etc.

chuckschick 10 years, 1 month ago

I guess this is better the typical LPD Saturday initiative of eating doughnuts and tasering dirty hippies.

4chewnut 10 years, 1 month ago

Lets hope the LPD goes after those naughty Greek parties, too. Oh wait, those kids have money so wouldn't want to make those parents unhappy.

krisell 10 years, 1 month ago

Normally, I would be with the majority of posters here. But, living in that neighborhood for the past 5 years, and having my property destroyed by my college-aged neighbors, I applaud the effort. One game day, I looked out my window and was treated to a nice view of "Fat Obnoxious Neighbor" (that's his nickname) urinating onto the hood of a friend's car. Another game day, I was sitting on my porch, kindof hidden from view, reading a book and watching the passer-by when two of Fat Obnoxious Neighbor's little girl friends came skipping out of my garage with several of my things. Their excuse was they had "seen the stuff sitting there for weeks on end and thought I didn't want it anymore. Sorry, we're a little drunk!" I really couldn't care less if kids want to drink, I just don't want it in my neighborhood every time there's a football game. Every time they get drunk, it would seem, to the casual observer, that it was their first time. I remember my first beer too, and I didn't run around acting like a jackass.

ralphralph 10 years, 1 month ago

"So many things go wrong when minors drink,"

Uh ... yeah! It's way different if a 20 1/2 year old drinks a beer than when a 21 year old does ... Right?

They got a grant. Whoopee! It'll probably be a seatbelt checkpoint next game, or whatever dance the Feds and their money want the PD to dance.

Doing away with 3.2 beer for age 18-21 made a lot of people into dopers ... it's easier to hide a joint than it is to hide a pony keg or a 12-pack. Big, stupid mistake, but the Fed $$$$ play the tunes, and we all dance.

Dayna Lee 10 years, 1 month ago

I really wish that the schools would explain to kids what the legal limits are and how little alcohol it takes to get there. I think we need to look into why these kids are drinking in the first place. If no one buys it for them, they can't drink. Some one older is telling them that alcohol is going to make it fun and they really just miss out on the experience of not drinking.

Curtis Lange 10 years, 1 month ago

There are much more serious issues the police could be attending to instead of catching a 20 yr old drinking at a football game...

rousseau108 10 years, 1 month ago

KUweatherman (Curtis Lange) says:

There are much more serious issues the police could be attending to instead of catching a 20 yr old drinking at a football game:

You mean like dealing with that same 20yr old later when he gets into a fight or breaks somebody's window or drives drunk and does a hit and run or . . .

No matter what the police do, people always think there's something else they should be doing. If they're doing a saturation patrol, people whine that they should be out catching rapists (although I don't see how you can just say I'm going to go catch a rapist tonight), but if some drunk driver kills someone, then you whine about why the police weren't out stopping drunks. Bottom line is, if the feds give them money for a specific purpose, they have to use it for that purpose or they don't get the money.

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