ABLE Commission checks in on Tulsa State Fair on Opening Day, comes up empty
10:30 PM, Sep 26, 2013
10:54 PM, Sep 26, 2013
TULSA - The Tulsa State Fair broke a record Thursday.
Agent Eric Smoot with Oklahoma's Alcoholic Beverage Laws Enforcement Commission said for the first time ever on the fair's first day beer, alcohol, or wine wasn't sold to an undercover teen.
Smoot said the fair's first day is notorious for selling alcohol, wine or beer to minors. Last year, six vendors sold to an undercover girl -- and were subsequently fined -- on Opening Day.
Smoot believes this year's training helped cut down on the numbers.
This is the first year officials at Expo Square asked Smoot to train bartenders. He gave them a 30-minute lesson on things like how to spot underage drinkers, fake IDs, and when to cut people off.
Smoot had 17-year-old Lindsey Wilson go undercover Thursday night to test out the training.
Wilson went to 14 different vendors inside and outside fair grounds -- none of them sold to her.
Felesha Preciado is one of the vendors. She's no stranger to selling beer to large crowds, whether it's Octoberfest or fair.
Preciado turned down the underage teen and was the only vendor to take her ID. She said, "it's saving someone's life. My best friend in high school got hit by a drunk driver. Now, 15 years later she needs another hip replacement because of it."
Wilson signed up to go undercover in her criminal justice class at Tulsa Tech.
"I know there's underage drinkers, people out there partying. It's nice to know I'm doing something to prevent it," she said.
Smoot said selling wine or alcohol to a minor is a felony, punishable by a $2,500 fine and up to five years in jail.
Selling low-point beer to a minor is itself a misdemeanor and can be a $500 fine. Also, agents can arrest anyone over 21-year-old who gives a minor beer or alcohol.