HIGHLANDS RANCH, Colo. (CBS4) – Douglas County is conducting an undercover operation this week to try to prevent illegal liquor sales at a time when underage drinking is known to be a problem.

“There are a lot of occasions that are occurring. There’s graduation, we have prom and then we also have the beginning of summer,” said Sgt. Ron Hanavan with the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office.

A CBS4 crew was invited to follow along Wednesday while a volunteer who is under 21 walked into more than a dozen businesses in Highlands Ranch. She was working closely with deputies nearby, and was trying to determine if any of the restaurants, liquor stores or businesses with liquor licenses would let her buy alcohol.

Most of the businesses were in compliance with the law while CBS4 was along for the ride, but one clerk at a King Soopers grocery store was caught and received a citation.

Officials with Douglas County said they conduct similar stings at other times of the year.

“We want those individuals who are under the age of 21 — we want to make it as extremely difficult as possible for them to obtain alcohol,” Hanavan said.

Hanavan said the department’s goal is to prevent the tragedies that can occur with underage drinking or underage drinking and driving.

There are more than 130 businesses in Douglas County with liquor licenses.


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