Loose management by new operators of a North Laurel liquor store that allowed two teen-agers to buy alcohol from a "fill-in" clerk has cost the license-holder a $1,500 fine and a five-day license suspension.
The Howard County Alcoholic Beverage Hearing Board imposed the penalty on Curtis Barnard III in an order dated Feb. 4.
According to an agreed statement of facts, a county police officer saw two youths enter Island Liquors, 10055 Washington Blvd., on Oct. 19 and emerge with "a large assortment of alcoholic beverages." He later learned the boy was 16 years old and the girl was 17.
The boy worked at the store and bought the alcohol from a clerk who had been fired by a previous owner for selling alcohol to customers younger than 21. That clerk was asked to fill in Oct. 19 by a store employee, without the knowledge of the new operators, Andrea Collins, Jeffrey Greenberg and Robert E. Kenison, who are in the process of buying the business from Barnard.
When county police Detective Martin Johnson visited the store Nov. 5, he found no records available to show any employees had alcohol management training, which is required under a board rule.
Barnard told the board that the incoming owners were running the place but often were not present, thinking of it as an investment that would "run itself."