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 February 6th, 2008  
1 in 5 convenience stores in St. Lucie County sold alcohol to minors in compliance sweep, according to Sheriff Ken J. Mascara
 
One in five convenience stores in St. Lucie County illegally sold alcohol to minors Tuesday night in an undercover compliance sweep by School Resource Deputies, according to Sheriff Ken J. Mascara.

“We do these operations several times a year to let convenience store workers know they have to follow the law about not selling alcohol to those under 21,” Sheriff Mascara said. “The good news is that 20 of the 25 stores we visited throughout the county followed the law. The bad news is that 20 percent did not.”

Deputies used two underage Sheriff’s Office employees and one other minor to try to make alcohol purchases at convenience stores Tuesday night from 5 to 9 p.m.

“We want to thank the businesses that strictly follow the law about not selling alcohol to minors, and we will send the 20 businesses that complied with the law letters to thank them for keeping alcohol out of the hands of minors,” Sheriff Mascara said.

Each convenience store employee who illegally sold alcohol to minors was charged with a misdemeanor criminal violation and must appear in county court to face the charges. The non-compliant stores were:

Hess: 1998 N. US-1
Valero: Hartman & Orange
Circle-K: 2301 Virginia Ave.
BP: 1889 N. US-1
BP: 7301 Indrio Rd.

“I place a high priority on compliance with these laws,” Sheriff Mascara said. “School Deputies show a video program in our schools called ‘Consequences’ to graphically show students the consequences of drunk driving. School Deputies also place cars wrecked in drunk-driving crashes at our schools during the year to graphically demonstrate the consequences of alcohol abuse.

“In addition, a new program called the Teen Driving Challenge teaches teenagers how to drive defensively and safely,” Sheriff Mascara said.

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