House of Liquors owner John S. Barnes said Tuesday an employee just made a mistake when she sold a six-pack of beer to a minor in December.

"Believe me, she did not do it intentionally. She goofed up," Barnes told the county liquor board at a violation hearing.

On Dec. 21 at about 8 p.m., Marty Allen Speak, 19, a Maryland State Police cadet, bought a six-pack of Budweiser at the liquor store in Carroll Plaza in Westminster. He showed the employee, Ila White of Westminster, his driver's license, which gives his date of birth.

"She says it was just a mental error on her part," Barnes said.

Barnes faces a fine of up to $2,000 and suspension of his liquor license.

Board administrator J. Ronald Lau said he and Speak visited nine businesses that night because the board had received complaints they sold alcohol to minors.

In a separate case, the owners of the Tollgate Inn, the former Silver Valley Inn, on Littlestown Pike, applied for a beer, wine and liquor license.

Robert E. Forsythe Jr. and Allen L. Younger, both of Westminster, opened the restaurant Dec. 14.The Silver Valley Inn closed in June 1989 after a tank truck crashedinto the building.

The Tollgate Inn is open for three meals a day, seven days a week, and serves seafood, steaks and sandwiches, the owners said. It seats about 70 people.

Forsythe, 24, has worked at Mary's Crab Deck on Littlestown Pike and is working toward a businessdegree at Western Maryland College. Younger, 44, is a contractor.

The board will issue a written decision in both cases within 30 days.

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