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Sunday, September 21, 2014
LBPD breaks up underage drinking party
Woman issued summons for violating social host law
By Anthony Rifilato
Herald file photo

Long Beach police broke up a party on East Market Street last week and issued a social host law violation to a woman who allegedly allowed minors to drink alcoholic beverages.

Police said that on Monday, June 17, officers responded to a noise complaint at 6:30 p.m. during a loud party at 225 E. Market St., where they observed a group of minors consuming alcohol in the backyard.

“Police officers responded to a loud party and they observed obvious alcohol use in the rear yard by persons under the age of 21,” said Lt. Eric Cregeen, the Police Department’s public information officer. “The police officers at the scene notified their parents, and they were released to their parents.”

Police issued a summons to 47-year-old Koren Rolon for violating the social host law and allowing underage drinking on the property. She is due to appear at Long Beach City Court on July 8.

“It should be noted that the Long Beach Police Department will not tolerate underage drinking in our community,” Cregeen said.

The social host ordinance refers to any legal adult who is in charge of the premises. The penalty for violating the ordinance is up to $250 and possibly 15 days in jail, subject to judicial discretion.

Long Beach was the first city to pass the social host law in 2006 and to date, Cregeen said that more than 40 violations have been issued. The passage of the ordinance was a goal of Long Beach Medical Center's Coalition to Prevent Underage Drinking since 2002.

“Most social host violations since 2006 have been youths who have been hosting parties for other youths,” said Judi Vining, the coalition’s coordinator. “However, we also know from surveys that kids party when their parents or other parents are home. Parents often say, ‘we know they’re going to drink anyway and they may as well drink at home and be safe.’ It’s a misconception because kids drink aggressively and rapidly, with the expressed desire to get drunk.”

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