Ocean Pride fined for under-age service

January 13, 1994|By Amy L. Miller | Amy L. Miller,Staff Writer

Carroll County's liquor board has fined the Ocean Pride restaurant in Eldersburg $1,000 for serving alcohol to an 18-year-old member of the Maryland State Police Explorer Scout troop.

Board members also suspended the restaurant's license for seven days and ordered all managers and bartenders at Ocean Pride to complete an alcohol-awareness course.

The board then voted to waive the license suspension if the establishment completes a one-year probation, said board Administrator J. Ronald Lau.

The case involved Ocean Pride's second violation for serving liquor to a minor. The restaurant was found guilty of the same offense in April 1992, said Chairman Russell Mayer.

"They got off lucky," Mr. Mayer said. "I am firmly against selling to minors. If I had my way, they would have served the week suspension, but the majority ruled."

Mr. Mayer said that because Ocean Pride's owners were fined $750 for the previous violation, the board increased the latest fine to $1,000.

"We told them that if there were any more violations, they would serve a week's suspension and then some," he said.

The latest liquor violation occurred Oct. 22, when Explorer Eric Helm was sent to Ocean Price, in Eldersburg Plaza off Liberty Road, in a sting operation that involved several South Carroll restaurants. Mr. Lau said the sting was conducted in response to anonymous complaints about businesses selling liquor to minors.

At Ocean Pride, Mr. Helm received a beer after a bartender briefly looked at his driver's license. The restaurant was the only establishment to serve him that night.

Mr. Helm's driver's license contains a photo and his date of birth.

The 23-year-old bartender told the liquor board that Mr. Helm entered the restaurant at a busy time. The bartender said he asked for his license but didn't check it for a proper birth date.

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