A POLICE underage booze sting operation ended early - after the officer in charge ran out of tickets.
Pubs, clubs and alcohol retailers in Conisbrough and Denaby were targeted in a test purchasing initiative to deter the sale of alcohol to underage drinkers.
Police sent young people to buy alcohol and six premises in the area failed the test in one night last month.
Officers revealed the shocking results at the Conisbrough and Denaby PACT meeting last Tuesday at Conisbrough Ivanhoe Centre.
Pc Rob Scarrow said: “I have done done numerous test purchasings, but I have never known six fail on one night.
“It was quite a shock to be honest. The previous month we did Mexborough and there was just one.
“I don’t think the sergeant was expecting me to ask for another book of tickets so soon after issuing me with one.
“An issue has been identified and it will be dealt with.
The premises which failed were not disclosed at the meeting.
Sgt Dave Jones told the Times: “The operations were run in conjunction with our licensing enforcement Officer Andy Steele.
“Our intention is not to prosecute licensees but to put them on the right track.
“We offer training and advice in alcohol awareness and underage sales so they can make sure it doesn’t happen again.We hope it is simply staff making mistakes and not licensees turning a blind eye to make money in a challenging economic climate.
“We are hoping that each premise will think twice about serving someone that looks underage without a valid form of ID.”
“We don’t want underage people walking around with alcohol in their system and the mayhem that can often cause.”
Premises which fail test purchasing operations are put on a three month action plan and a second test purchasing operation is conducted soon after.
If a premise fails twice, they will be asked to either close voluntarily for 48 hours or be prosecuted.
They can eventually have their alcohol licence revoked.
Test purchasing operations are conducted following complaints from the public and observations by police.