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Attorney General Lockyer and Law Enforcement Agencies Announce Plan to Combat Underage Drinking
(SANTA CLARA) – Attorney General Bill Lockyer today joined other state law enforcement agencies in unveiling a new investigative protocol to reduce deaths and injuries caused by under-aged drinking by targeting liquor stores, restaurants and bars that serve alcohol to individuals under the age of 21.
"We have seen too many tragedies involving under-aged drinking, and we all must do our part to prevent them," Lockyer said. "This collaborative effort will ensure that law enforcement agencies investigating alcohol-related deaths and injuries will take steps to determine the source of the alcohol, and that businesses that provide liquor to under-aged drinkers will face prosecution and harsh penalties, including the loss of their liquor licenses."
Target Responsibility for Alcohol Connected Emergencies (TRACE) was developed by a task force convened by Lockyer last year after he met Lynne Goodwin and discussed the death of her 20-year-old daughter, Casey. Active in fighting under-aged drinking as a member of Friday Night Live, Casey was killed in March 2003 by an 18-year-old drunk driver.
The task force was charged with developing a protocol for officers investigating alcohol-related incidents involving under-aged drinkers to identify the source of the alcohol. Under the protocol, law enforcement officers will immediately try to determine where the youths obtained or consumed alcohol prior to the event and notify the Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) if the alcohol was purchased or consumed at an ABC-licensed business establishment. If the incident involving under-aged drinkers results in death or injury, ABC will be notified immediately to take the appropriate enforcement action.
The ABC created a policy directive, and will work with law enforcement agencies throughout the state to ensure the TRACE protocol is implemented in all communities.
"ABC looks forward to working with its law enforcement partners to implement TRACE and hold accountable liquor licensees that sell to minors," said ABC Director Jerry R. Jolly.
Members of the task force included representatives of the Attorney General's Office, Lynne Goodwin, ABC, Office of Traffic Safety (OTS), the California Highway Patrol, California Police Chiefs Association California State Sheriffs' Association. and Mothers Against Drunk Driving.
The protocol was announced at the four-day "Teenwork 2004" conference in Santa Clara, attended by more than 800 youths and adults. Teenwork is sponsored by the California Friday Night Live Partnership, Tulare County Office of Education, California Department of Alcohol and Drug Programs and OTS.
Lockyer first met Goodwin during a Teenwork Town Hall Meeting at the Tulare Office of Education, where they discussed problems with tracing the source of the alcohol involved in traffic accidents involving under-aged drinkers.