Shoulder Tap Operation Yields No Arrests


Sag Harbor Village Police, working with SAFE in Sag Harbor, conducted a “shoulder tap operation” on Friday, August 10, reporting that no arrests were made and every adult approached during the exercise, asked to buy alcohol for minors, said, “No.”

A shoulder tap operation targets adults who purchase alcohol for people under the age of 21.  An underage decoy, under the direct supervision of a police officer, stands outside a retail establishment and asks patrons to buy them alcohol. The minor indicates in some way that he or she is underage and cannot purchase alcohol. If the adults agrees to purchase alcohol for the minor they could be subject to arrest for unlawfully dealing with a minor.

According to SAFE in Sag Harbor, data shows youth in the village are obtaining alcohol from adults. This kind of program is aimed at deterring that behavior. Last year, four of five establishments sold alcohol to minors. SAFE in Sag Harbor said the results of this year’s “shoulder tap operation” shows improvement in reducing this trend.