16 businesses cited for selling alcohol to minors

CONYERS -- A total of 16 local restaurants and businesses were recently cited for selling alcohol to an underage patron.

The Rockdale County Narcotics and Vice Unit, a joint unit with the Conyers Police Department and the Rockdale County Sheriff's Office, conducted an undercover operation last week at sit-down restaurants, gas stations and food marts.

During the operation, an investigator and underage Narcotics and Vice Unit employee went into restaurants and ordered alcoholic beverages. Restaurants received citations if one of its employees served the underage person. "Cash and carry" establishments, such as gas stations, were also cited if employees allowed the underage RCSO employee to purchase alcoholic beverages.

As a result of last week's operation, the Conyers Police Department issued 11 citations in its city limits. They are: Red Lobster, Don Tello's, Uncle Charlie's, Ruby Tuesday, Frontera Mex-Mex, Sonny's, Jim & Nick's, Sharon's Southern Cuisine, Exxon on Klondike Road at Interstate 20 East, Shell Mart on West Avenue at Interstate 20 West and Citgo on Irwin Bridge Road at Sigman Road.

The county cited five businesses, which included: Aaron's Grocery, Fritz Outdoor, Shell Mart on Ga. Highway 138 at Old Salem Road, Conyers Food Mart on Ga. Highway 20 North and Hightower Food Mart on Ga. Highway 20 North.

Those that were cited within the county will face charges in Magistrate Court, explained RCSO Deputy/Crime Analyst Michael Camp, where the businesses will have an opportunity to a hearing concerning the alcohol sale violation.

According to county ordinance, alcohol sale violations can result in a $600 fine and a six-day suspension of the business's alcohol license for the first offense. Fines climb to $3,000 and suspension increases to 30 days for the second violation. A business's alcohol license can be revoked under the third offense.