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Baxter cops get grant for alcohol compliance checks

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BAXTER — The Baxter Police Department has been awarded a grant to conduct alcohol compliance checks on all licensed retailers.

In a complaince check, a law enforcement officer works with an underage youth who attempts to purchase alcohol from a bar, restaurant, liquor store, grocery store or the licensed outlet. If the clerk/server completes the sale, the outlet has illegally sold alcohol and fails the check.

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“It is extremely important that we let everyone know, including the retailers and citizens, that we are not going to allow underage purchasing of alcohol to become a problem in our area,” Baxter Police Chief Jim Exsted said in a news release.

In the next few months, officers will conduct the first round of compliance checks. A second round of checks will be conducted after the first of the year.

Penalties for selling to a minor may include fines and license suspensions and may potentially lead to license revocation. A server who sells to someone younger than 21 may be charged with a gross misdemeanor offense.

The Minnesota Institute of Public Health provided the alcohol compliance check funding through the Enforcing Underage Drinking Laws Program of the Minnesota Department of Public Safety.

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