More than 90% of Stores were Successful in Spring Break Alcohol Stings

A statewide undercover operation by the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission found that more than 92 percent of retailers were successful in preventing the sale of alcohol to minors during the busy Spring Break season.

The news was the result of TABC’s annual Spring Break minor stings, a statewide operation which tests retailers’ ability to identify and prevent sales of alcohol to minors. During the operations, minor-aged volunteers attempted to purchase alcohol at TABC-licensed businesses across the state. Locations where the minors were able to purchase alcohol could face administrative action by TABC, while the employees who sold the alcohol could be subject to further charges.

Retailers located along popular travel corridors between Texas cities and the Gulf Coast, as well as those near college campuses, were visited as part of the campaign. Of the 1,488 TABC-licensed businesses visited during the operation, just 116 were cited for possible violations of the Alcoholic Beverage Code. This year’s operation marks a 60 percent increase in the number of undercover operations conducted during the Spring Break period. In 2015, TABC agents conducted 930 stings during the same period.

The 2016 operations also mark a continued increase in the overall number of retailers who were in compliance with the law, according to Chief Robert Saenz, TABC Chief of Field Operations.

“We’re extremely pleased that the retailer compliance rate continues to climb, even as more businesses are being tested during these operations,” Saenz said. “This goes to show that Texas retailers are taking the law seriously and are doing an outstanding job when it comes to keeping alcohol out of the hands of minors. I’d like to thank all of our permittees and licensees for their vigilance in keeping Texans safe.”

Businesses which received citations will be listed on TABC’s Public Inquiry website as their cases are settled.