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Article updated: 10/22/2013 7:24 PM

11 Arlington Heights businesses punished for serving liquor to minors

By Melissa Silverberg

Nearly a dozen Arlington Heights businesses found to have served alcohol to minors this year were reprimanded Monday with punishments ranging from fines to suspensions of their liquor licenses.

Eleven businesses pleaded guilty to serving underage patrons in 2013.

Ten of the violations were the result of an annual "sting" performed by the Arlington Heights Police Department with the help of underage agents who attempt to buy alcohol. The police checked 94 businesses between July 15 and Aug. 20.

Some business representatives said Monday their employees made math mistakes when they calculated a customer's age.

But Village President Tom Hayes pointed out underage IDs are vertical in Illinois.

Some of the violators got their Beverage Alcohol Sellers and Servers Education and Training certification online and will be required to take in-person training.

"We take these liquor licenses and our liquor laws in Arlington Heights very seriously," Hayes said. "Especially when we're talking about the sale to minors."

Red Rooster Liquors, 827 N. Wilke Road, had its third violation in three years. Its liquor license was suspended for five days, and the business must pay $1,000 in fines. The store owner admitted to not checking an ID before selling a six-pack of beer to a 19-year-old.

Sun Shui Restaurant, 155 W. Rand Road, will lose its license for one day and pay a $700 fine after having its second violation since 2006.

Jameson's Charhouse, 1331 W. Dundee Road, was found guilty of a second violation and was fined $800.

An employee at Liquor Mart, 705 E. Kensington, was on the phone with his girlfriend when he looked at an agent's ID and then served her anyway, said village prosecutor Ernest Blomquist. The business was fined $600.

King Liquor and Cigar, 807 W. Rand Road, was fined $800 for sale to a minor.

Other decisions: a $500 fine for Chipotle Mexican Grill, 338 E. Rand Road; a $600 fine for Smashburger, 115 W. Rand Road; a $800 fine for Gatsby's Pizza and Pub, 427 E. Rand Road; a $600 fine for Tuscan Market and Wine Shop, 141 W. Wing St.; and a $500 fine for Jinmi Ok, 1918 S. Arlington Heights Road.

One of the hearings came not from the police sting, but from an actual sale to minors.

On Feb. 1, Arlington Liquor and Wine, 401 S. Arlington Heights Road, sold alcohol to a group of 15-year-old girls because the owner said they looked "mature." The girls were subpoenaed to Monday's hearing.

"These people's ability to feed their families is going to be impacted because of your decision to go drinking that night," Blomquist told the girls, "not to mention you put your own safety in danger."

The store's liquor license will be suspended for two days, and it was fined $1,000.

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