Three fail alcohol check

Sting comes on heels of perfect compliancy rate in March


— Three Steamboat Springs businesses failed a routine Steamboat Springs Police Department alcohol compliance check Friday night, three months after all 17 businesses passed a similar check.

"Obviously it's disappointing when you achieve a 100 percent (compliancy) rate and then experience a setback," police Capt. Joel Rae said Monday. "It shows that these checks are something we need to be doing all the time."

Mother's Deli, Qdoba Mexican Grill and the Kum & Go on Anglers Drive failed the check by selling alcohol to an undercover 18-year-old man and 19-year-old woman. Mother's Deli and Qdoba Mexican Grill received two citations because they served alcohol to both undercover minors. Kum & Go was cited once because only one of the minors purchased alcohol from the convenience store.

The three servers or cashiers who sold the alcohol received misdemeanor summonses to Routt County Court, Rae said.

The 10 businesses that passed the compliance check are Sunpie's Bistro, Steamboat Yacht Club, Mahogany Ridge Brewery and Grill, Steamboat Discount Liquor, Panda Garden, Vino, Old Town Pub, The Wine Rack, Veterans of Foreign Wars and the Pirate's Pub in Jade Summit restaurant.

Rae said city staff, which includes City Clerk Julie Jordan, assistant City Attorney Dan Foote and himself, will recommend that the Steamboat Springs City Council treat Mother's Deli's and Qdoba's violations as two each, not one.

The offenses are the third and fourth violations for Mother's Deli. They are the first and second for Qdoba.

Mother's Deli was cited by the state's Liquor Enforcement Division in a July 2006 incident in which open containers of alcohol were allowed to leave the premises. The state suspended the bar's liquor license for 15 days as a result of the violation. The bar served five of those days in November 2006. An additional 10 days were held in abeyance. The second violation occurred in September 2006 when officers cited the business for allowing a visibly intoxicated man to loiter on the bar's premises. The city imposed a 28-day liquor license suspension for that violation. Ten days were served in May, and 18 days were held in abeyance.

Rae said the city could implement those 18 days in addition to the state "quite possibly" implementing its 10 days. That wouldn't include whatever punishment the business receives as a result of Friday's failed compliance check.

Mother's Deli, Qdoba and Kum & Go likely will appear on the council's July 5 Liquor License Authority agenda.

Stephen Chavez, who manages Mother's Deli and represented the bar during a hearing in February, was unavailable for comment Monday. Chavez was arrested June 9 by Steamboat police on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol.

"People need to constantly be reminded to check IDs. Period," Rae said. "These are 18- and 19-year-old kids that look like they're 18 and 19."

The compliance checks were conducted using a $43,000 federal grant the police department received to curb underage drinking in the community. The Enforcing Underage Drinking Laws, or EUDL, grant is being administered through April 2008. The money is being used for police training, additional investigations, compliance checks and educational and awareness programs at area schools.


JQPUBLIC 9 years, 10 months ago

"The three servers or cashiers who sold the alcohol received misdemeanor summonses"... that's part of the problem, IF these people are properly trained then the fault is with them, most employees could care less what you do to the owners, it's just another job to them (there's no work ethic anymore). IF the servers were not properly trained, then throw the book at the owners and managers. A heavy penalty for a properly trained server that ignores the rules would go a long way toward compliance, a heavy penalty to the owners/managers that fail to train is more appropriate then expecting them to be responsible for a properly trained employee's every action. Think in the real world, hold people accountable for their own actions.


whyquestion 9 years, 10 months ago

when will OC do this program again ,it appears their business could stand some looking into??????????OOOPPPSSS i forgot it is now the hideout for sex predators and anarchists????????when will OC learn !!!!!!!how about TIPS training for bartenders?????


Diana Simon 9 years, 10 months ago

I don't understand why Mother's Deli didn't have to fulfill its entire suspension for violating the drinking laws. I was in a car accident caused by a drunken driver over 27 years ago and suffer chronic pain because of a broken back. My one broken bone has developed into my needing multiple surgeries. The driver was drinking at the Ore House and the server didn't stop him from driving. I wish he would have been stopped before he was stopped by the front of my car.


elphaba 9 years, 10 months ago

What are the ethics of asking minors to purchase alcohol - even by the police?


dave reynolds 9 years, 10 months ago

Mothers Deli..once a great place to have breakfast..good portions and friendly personal service(loved BIll and Carol)..has know become the hang out of binge drinkers obnokous punks..this is becoming a many violations does this place have to have before something SERIOUS is done(jailing them would get their attention)..fining TIPS educated employees who violate the law is a start..but slapping MOMS owners wrists is apperently not working.. shutem down for the summer maybe that will get thier attention..HUMM Tugboat seems to have fights everynite why aren't they checked into..Scott..Investagative 1800 ski time square for those of you wondering


Vince arroyo 9 years, 10 months ago

I believe that the responsibility lies on the server. Not the establishment. Even if properly trained or not. I agree elphaba Those ethics are wrong! Just send one server to jail would send a strong message on being responsible of their actions.


JQPUBLIC 9 years, 10 months ago

Here we go again.... it must be okay to serve minors because the way the police department proves it is happening is unethical to some. I guess we wait until a minor gets killed in a drunk driving accident, then, if we can prove where he/she was served we can throw the book at the server, now that's ethical... too bad the kid is already dead.


Matthew Stoddard 9 years, 10 months ago

Good points, JQ.

Elphaba and Hometown: how would you suggest the police make sure that nobody is serving to minors? Would it be better to have someone over 21yrs old but looks younger? That defeats the purpose since...wait for iiiittttt...they are OVER 21yrs old. Should then they lie and say they were under 21 for the "gotcha!"?

Since it's unethical to enforce the law they way they did, what do you propose? (waiting to hear "Just ask them if they carded everyone. They won't lie!)

And in Mother's case, they are repeat offenders. I'm pretty sure it's not the exact same person each time as the server. Might be, but since no names have been released...


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