LBPD breaks up underage drinking party


Long Beach police broke up an underage drinking party on West Park Avenue on Oct. 7 and issued an 18-year-old woman a summons for violating the city’s Social Host Law.

Police said they responded to the home after a neighbor called to complain about a large party at around 5 p.m.

Officers Rudy Pennetti and Ken Apple observed open alcoholic beverages in the house, during a party where 16 teenagers between the ages of 18 and 20 were gathered, including the host, Police Commissioner Michael Tangney said.

“It was on Irish Day,” Tangney said. “They decided that since they weren’t old enough to drink in the bars, they would just drink at one person’s house.”

Tangney said the host’s parents were not at home at the time of the party, and she was scheduled to appear in Long Beach City Court on Nov. 9. Police did not disclose the host’s name.

The Social Host Law holds any legal adult in charge of the property accountable, Tangney said, and the penalty for violating the ordinance is up to $1,000, 15 days in jail or both, subject to judicial discretion. Residents under 21 who are cited also may be required to attend a three-hour education series hosted by Long Beach AWARE, a nonprofit organization dedicated to preventing alcohol and substance abuse among young people.

“The Long Beach Police Department will not tolerate underage drinking in our community and enforces the Social Host Ordinance when this violation occurs,” the department said in a statement.