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More stores allegedly sell alcohol to minors

By Melanie Ruberti

mruberti@civitasmedia.com

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LaGRANGE — Two more area business owners found themselves in trouble with LaGrange police investigators after they were allegedly caught selling alcohol to people under 21 on March 31.

Sgt. Mark Cavender, head of the LaGrange police Special Investigation Unit, said the owner of the JK Food Mart at 1109 New Franklin Road and the owner of PCA Foods at 1200 Hogansville Road were cited after an undercover bust.

Cavender said the team sent a minor into each business during a special undercover operation.

According to the police report, an employee at the JK Food Mart sold a six pack of Smirnoff to a minor. In a separate report, a clerk allegedly sold a 25-ounce can of Bud Light Mangorita to someone underage.

This was the fourth time in a week the SIU team cited two local businesses selling alcohol to minors.

Cavender also cited the owner of the Chevron station at 315 New Franklin Road and the owner of the Citgo at 303 Commerce Ave on March 29 during a surprise check on those stores.

According to Cavender, the team received several complaints both stores were selling alcohol to minors.

The owners were cited at the scene by SIU for the offense and will have to appear in municipal court, Cavender stated.

He also said the charges against the businesses will be reported to the city manager and City Council, as outlined in the new city bar ordinance, plus disclosed to the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms.

According to Cavender, both stores have been cited for selling alcohol to minors once before in the past five years.

He stated since this is a second occurrence for both businesses, they could be fined by the court.

Melanie Ruberti is a reporter with LaGrange Daily News. She may be reached at 706-884-7311, ext. 2156.