Hot line targets teenage imbibing

March 10, 2006|By MELISSA HARRIS | MELISSA HARRIS,SUN REPORTER

Howard County police receive about one or two calls a week on their "party buster" hot line that takes tips about coming parties involving underage drinking, police spokeswoman Sherry Llewellyn said.

Mark Heron, the county's alcohol enforcement officer, checks the phone line's voice mail every day. People can leave anonymous messages or include their names.

"Oftentimes, once word gets out that someone has tipped off the police, the party gets canceled," Llewellyn said. "Rumors spread pretty fast, and we'd rather have the party not happen at all. We think the line is serving our goal when that happens."

Llewellyn said that when Heron took over the county's alcohol enforcement job in October 2002, he changed the phone number and began promoting it during speeches at schools and conversations with members of Mothers Against Drunk Driving.

The hot line number is 410-313-2284.

melissa.harris@baltsun.com

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