3 charged in underage drinking sting in Potsdam, police say

POTSDAM, NY — The Potsdam Police Department conducted an Underage Alcohol Sales Compliance Check in the Village of Potsdam on Friday night.

Officers, with the assistance of an underage agent of the Police Department, checked thirteen businesses within the village.

The list of businesses checked were:

1. IGA, Elm Street
2. Kinney Drugs, Maple Street
3. Stewart’s Shop, Maple Street
4. T&R Wines and Liquors, Market Street
5. Sunoco, Market Street
6. Walgreen’s, Market Street
7. Price Chopper, Market Street
8. Maxfields, Market Street
9. McDuffs, Market Street
10. Half Tons, Market Street
11. Lounge, Market Street
12. Market Lanes, Market Street
13. Club 21, Elm Street

As a result of the compliance check three individuals were charged with Prohibited Sale of Alcohol to a Person Under 21.

Susan E. Michele, 59, while employed at Walgreen’s store on Market Street, sold alcohol to the underage agent.

Debora A. Madsen, 49, while employed at the Sunoco store on Market Street, sold alcohol to the underage agent.

Jodie E. Follmer, 29, while employed at Club 21 on Elm Street, sold alcohol to the underage agent.

The staff at the other 10 businesses checked and turned away the underage agent without selling the alcohol to the agent.

The fact that these stores turned away our underage agent is exactly what the Potsdam Police Department was hoping to see. Drinking by minors can lead to unintentional deaths and injuries to not only themselves, but innocent people. Additionally a considerable amount of the violence we see in the village by people under the age of 21 is alcohol related.

The timing of this detail comes at a time underage alcohol related incidents in the village are on a rise. These incidents range from the minor offenses of noise violations, open containers, and underage possession of alcohol to more serious offenses where the underage subjects could become injured. These incidents include: disorderly conducts, assaults, and incidents where the underage person is so highly intoxicated as a result injuries or death could result. Our ultimate goal with this detail is to attempt to decrease and stop the sale of alcoholic beverages to our youth in the community and diminish these occurrences of minor and serious incidents.