Five of the six businesses cited last week for selling alcohol to minors were repeat offenders, according to the Forsyth County Sheriff’s Office.
As part of an ongoing effort to deter underage alcohol sales, the office visited 28 stores.
The six cited included three businesses on McFarland Parkway — RaceTrac, Shell Food Mart and Forsyth Liquor. Also cited were Quick Mart Citgo on Old Atlanta Road and the Cumming Texaco and Alpharetta Food, both on Atlanta Highway.
Of those, only RaceTrac was a first-time offender, according to Doug Rainwater, spokesman for the sheriff’s office.
Each employee charged with selling alcohol to a minor will go before Magistrate Court next month, Rainwater said.
“Then the clerk and the business owner have to appear before the [county commission] and at that point, the board will decide whether or not to levy any sanctions against the business,” he said. “… What the business owners have to worry about is the board does have the right to suspend your license to sell and, as we know, that’s big bucks.”
According to Rainwater, the college students assisting in the operation provided their real licenses, which indicated they were underage, when asked.
“We don’t try to entangle clerks with false IDs,” Rainwater said. “This is just basically someone buying alcohol and someone didn’t check their ID, or an ID was given but [it] was clearly not for someone 21 years old.”
The sheriff’s office feels the increased vigilance is helping.
“There will always be violations, but the more we do these types of checks, the message will get out eventually that you need to make sure your employees check everybody,” he said. “The system we have in place is working. Out of 28 businesses, 22 of those businesses did check the ID properly.”