STARTing to combat underage drinking

A new law enforcement team consisting of Chittenden County police officers, liquor control and the DMV conducted a raid of downtown Burlington on March 17, according to the press release. The Stop Teen Alcohol Risk Team (START) patrol resulted in 450 contacts, 47 charges for possession, six fake identification confiscations, two citations for disorderly conduct and an arrest for a DUI, the release stated. “We picked March 17 [for the night of the raid] because it was St. Patrick’s Day and Burlington has had issues in the past with underage drinkers,” Shelburne Police Sgt. Allen Fortin said. The event was led by 12 officers between the hours of 8 p.m. and 3 a.m. and focused on the hill around UVM campus as well as the downtown bar area of Burlington, according to the release. “The Chittenden County START team continues to be an effective and useful tool in both proactive and reactive patrols in communities that battle underage alcohol-related issues,” the release stated. Fortin said they plan on having more raids this spring.