GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) – Cracking down on underage drinking is once again a top priority for local Alcohol Law Enforcement officers, with thousands of college students back in town.
Local agencies say violations for things like fake IDs and selling alcohol to someone underage skyrocket this time of year.
ALE officers say they’re cracking down on private clubs because of increased violent crime across the country. They say their number one goal in eastern North Carolina is keeping college students safe and they have three main ways to accomplish that.
- Locating the source of the alcohol and holding the person or establishment responsible,
- Educating freshmen at local universities,
- And addressing fake IDs.
ALE Special Agent Russell King says fake IDs are the biggest problem in this area.
“We’ve seen a massive influx of fake id’s with the technology that’s out there. Kids can not only create them on their computers but there are sources that they can order them through the mail and most of those locations are out of the country where they get fake IDs,” Agent King said.
ALE officers work with bars in uptown Greenville, training bouncers on how to recognize fake IDs.
Many bars use scanners to verify information on an ID. That also creates an electronic database of who’s coming into clubs. The scanners can’t actually tell if the ID is real or fake, yet 5th Street Distillery General Manager Tony Frazier says fake ids aren’t as big of a problem for them because of the devices.
“Since we’ve gotten the scanners, not near as much. No, we’ve kind of cut down on that, which is good for us. You know everybody tries, but as soon as they see us trying to scan, they just turn around and walk away. So it’s been real helpful,” Frazier said.
ALE officers continue training bouncers and collaborating with them on special operations.