August 15, 2017  |  04:37 pm

The St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office recently conducted two undercover operations targeting Juvenile Underage Drinking Enforcement (J.U.D.E.). The operations were funded by a federal grant through the Louisiana Highway Safety Commission. A total of 65 businesses on both sides of the parish were checked during the operations that took place between August 7 and August 9.  

With the 2017-18 school year just underway, deputies want to ensure that alcoholic beverage outlets in St. Tammany Parish are in compliance with L.R.S. 14:93.11, which prohibits the sale of alcoholic beverages to persons under 21 years of age. These compliance checks involve the use of a commissioned STPSO deputy who has not reached the age of 21.

A court mandatory misdemeanor summons is issued to offending clerks. Penalties for violations of this statute can result in fines of not less than $500 nor more than $1000 or imprisonment for not less than thirty days nor more than six months, or both. 

Below are the results of these recent operations:
On the eastern side of the parish: 29 outlets were visited. Of these 29 businesses, 8 clerks were issued summonses for non-compliance.
On the western side of the parish: 36 outlets were visited. Of these 36 businesses, 10 clerks were issued summonses for non-compliance. 

In Louisiana, modern driver’s licenses and identification cards for persons under 21 are issued in a vertical format instead of horizontal, with the words “Under 21 until” in bright red print to the right of the photo. In addition, most major chains have scanner technology installed that allow the clerk to scan the license or identification card and verify that the purchaser is of legal age.

The S.T.P.S.O. would like to commend all of the businesses, and their employees, that are continually in compliance with this law. These undercover operations are conducted frequently throughout the year across the parish.