Morongo Basin – During July and August, 2012, deputies from the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department, Morongo Basin Station, participated in undercover “Tobacco Sales to Minors” operations throughout the Morongo Basin. The dates and times of the operations are confidential in the interest of protecting the identity of the minor decoys.
During operations of this nature, a minor decoy (under the age of 18) – under the direct supervision of a sheriff’s deputy – attempts to purchase tobacco products from retailers. The decoys are instructed to provide their true age if asked. When a business does sell the tobacco products to the minor decoy, deputies make contact with the salesperson and issue them a citation for the misdemeanor offense of providing / selling tobacco products to a minor.
During these operations, approximately 30 tobacco retailers were visited. Five citations were issued to employees who sold tobacco products to the minor decoys. Employees were cited at each of the following locations:
- Town Market, 56000 block of SR62, Yucca Valley
- King Smoke Shop, 58000 block of SR62, Yucca Valley
- Super One Foods, 55000 block of SR62, Yucca Valley
- Adobe Liquor, 4900 block of Adobe Rd, 29 Palms
- 7-11 Food Stores, 73000 block of SR62, 29 Palms
Providing / Selling tobacco products to a minor is a misdemeanor punishable by fines up to $200 for the first offense, $500 for the second offense and $1000 for subsequent offenses.