5 Portland businesses busted for selling alcohol to minor

(Photo: WKRN)

PORTLAND, Tenn. (WKRN) – Portland police conducted an alcohol sting across the city on Tuesday.

Of the 27 establishments that sell alcohol, five, or 19 percent, of the businesses sold to a minor.

According to police, the 18-year-old high schooler showed his license, which cleared stated he was a minor.

“He looks like an 18-year-old kid. They should have known,” said Det. Joey Rush. “It’s very obvious they just don’t take the time to look at the ID like they should.”

One of the places that failed is the Hitching Post Western Saloon on Highway 31 West.

(Photo: WKRN)

When approached by News 2 Wednesday for a comment, they locked the door.

Someone from behind the locked door said, “I don’t know [anything] about it, but I know I don’t have to let you in.”

Portland Wine & Spirits also failed.

Denise Hall told News 2 the clerk on duty at the time was young and just made a mistake.

“She was still in training. She ID’ed him, but I don’t know if she just looked at the date wrong or what. We had to fire her on the spot,” Hall said. “It’s the owner’s livelihood. We’ll have to be more vigilant. We are scared to even hire anyone right now.”

Senor Fajitas also sold to the high school student.

(Photo: WKRN)

By phone a manager told News 2 the server did ask for an ID and just didn’t do the math during a busy time of the day.

The 18-year-old attempted to buy beer at Jackpot Convenience Store on the state line, too. Detectives said the teen was turned away though.

Heta Patel is the manager and told News 2 underage kids try to buy alcohol all the time and they turn them away.

“We just try to ID all the time,” she said.

The five clerks who did sale to the minor were all cited and the businesses will have to go before the city’s beer and alcohol board.