SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - Over 400 people were arrested or cited as part of a statewide underage alcohol sting.
The California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control and officers from dozens of local police and sheriff’s departments cited 336 individuals for providing alcohol to minors and an additional 81 people were arrested or cited for various crimes.
The "Decoy Shoulder Tap Operation" involved a minor, under the direct supervision of a peace officer, standing outside of a liquor store or convenience store and asking patrons to buy them alcohol. If the adults agree and purchase alcohol for the minor, officers then arrest and cite them for furnishing alcohol to a minor.
The penalty for furnishing alcohol to a minor is a minimum $1000 fine and 24 hours of community service.
Authorities say the operation was an effort to build safer and stronger communities by holding individuals accountable for illegal activity and informing the community about the dangers of underage drinking.