GILES COUNTY, Tenn. (WKRN) – An underage alcohol sting in Giles County revealed some very discouraging results.
According to investigators, the sting began in June of this year. Investigators said they sent underage people into 11 stores across the county.
Seven of the stores asked for ID when they tried to buy alcohol, but four stores sold alcohol to them without asking for ID.
According to investigators, many of those four stores sold to underage buyers multiple times, and one store on North First Street reportedly sold to a minor five times.
News 2 has obtained undercover surveillance footage of two of those operations.
The video from June 27 shows the underage male walking into the North First Street convenience store, picking out an alcoholic beverage, and taking it to the counter.
You can hear the clerk ask for ID, which the minor supplied. Despite him being under 21, the clerk still sold him the beverage.
A few minutes later, he relayed what had happened with investigators.
“I went to check out. She asked for my ID. I showed it to her and then she sold it to me,” he said.
A few weeks later, investigators targeted the same store.
This time, surveillance footage showed the minor buying an alcoholic beverage and then asking for a vape product.
Investigators said this time the clerk sold the products without asking for any ID.
Long time Giles County Sheriff’s Investigator Mike Thomason said the results of his operation were upsetting.
“We got kids out here. We have parents out here complaining about their kids getting alcohol and it all leads back to a a majority of it to one store,” he said.
Of the four stores that broke the law, Thomason said the one on North First Street sold to a minor five times.
“Luckily it hasn’t happened – a kid gets intoxicated, gets out, kills somebody, or kills themselves,” he said.
Investigators supplied News 2 with the store’s phone number, the same one listed in Google searches. News 2 called the store multiple times for a response.
Each time a recording said, “Sorry, the mailbox is full.”
“It doesn’t matter how old they are or how old they look; the law says you shall ID. You have to ask for ID and that is what they need to be doing and we will be back and do it again. We are not going to stop; we will continue going and checking these places,” Thomason said.
Deputies cited all the clerks who sold to minors.
Investigators told News 2 the convenience store on North First Street had their beer license suspended for 30 days, meaning they cannot sell alcohol. Deputies said the store’s owner was fined $10,000 and the store is on probation for a year.