New campaign targets parents who give alcohol to teens

May 27, 2015

PROVO — High school graduations are in full swing this week and Utah County Sheriff Jim Tracy Tuesday says he has a seat reserved for any adult who provides alcohol to a teenager.

Deputies say that most of the heartbreaking cases they respond to start with teenagers drinking alcohol.

“One of the things that sometimes happens is that adults will provide alcohol to minors, and they will do it with a mindset that it is better to control how they get it, because if they don’t control how they get it, then they will find it anyway and it might be irresponsible,” Utah County Sheriff’s Sgt. Spencer Cannon said.

Cannon said he has found that teenage drinking usually always leads to drunk driving.

“Minors who consume alcohol, they don’t want to get caught in the first place and so they are certainly not going to call a parent in most cases and say, ‘I have been drinking, can you come and get me?’ They are just going to drive home so it creates risks beyond just that they are drinking illegally,” Cannon said.

Cannon and other Utah County sheriff’s deputies are putting decals that say “Seat reserved for adults who give alcohol to minors,” on their back windows as a warning to adults.

“We have a reserved seat there. This seat is reserved for adults who provide alcohol to minors and that reserved seat will transport you to the jail,” Tracy said.

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