Four employees at local Dutchess County retail locations are facing charges after being busted by state police for selling alcohol to minors as part of a statewide crackdown on underage drinking.
In an effort to ensure that retailers are complying with the state’s Alcoholic Beverage Control laws, state police conducted a plain-clothes check of 22 Dutchess County stores over the weekend, which led to the arrests of four employees, including a teenager, for various violations.
According to the New York State Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services, underage drinking is associated with the three most common causes of death among youth who consume alcohol, including accidental deaths, such as car accidents, homicides, and suicides.
State police announced that they will continue to conduct underage drinking enforcement details throughout the state “to protect the citizens of New York State and its youth.”
Among those arrested include:
- Hopewell Junction resident Antonio Guarino, 18, an employee at Sunoco on Route 376 in Wappingers Falls;
- Poughkeepsie resident Rocco Romeo, 70, an employee at Fishkill Wine and Liquor on Main Street in Fishkill;
- Beacon resident Jeleannette Oquendo, 26, an employee at Wolcot Wine and Liquor on Wolcott Avenue in Beacon, and
- Beacon resident Aimee Rastadt, 28, an employee at Bob’s Corner Store on Wolcott Avenue in Beacon.
Each of the four clerks was charged with prohibited sales of an alcoholic beverage and unlawfully dealing with a child, both misdemeanors. They are due back in court later this year to answer the charges.
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