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Kids and their yen for pedestrian beer cost Cleveland Circle bar its license for two days

The Boston Licensing Board today ordered Mary Ann's to shut for two days as punishment for a Nov. 14 police inspection that found six underage customers with beers in their possession.

At a hearing on Tuesday, Sgt. Det. Robert Mulvey said he and his partner immediately noticed "several small groups of patrons" who appeared to be too young to be quaffing suds legally.

Sure enough, he said, six of the customers were 20 and in possession of forged licenses from other states. One had a can of Naragansett, another was caught with a Yuengling, another with a Pabst Blue Ribbon, another with a Bud Light and one with a Coors Light. He did not specify the brand preferred by the sixth underage drinker.

The bar's attorney, David Eisenstadt, argued the board did everything it could to prevent this kind of thing from happening: Not only did he eye the customers, he ran their purported licenses through a license scanner and they all passed. Police say license counterfeiters keep getting better.

But Mulvey said the bar needs to do something: "There's no question they need to have a more vigilant doorman, because the kids are getting in here."

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Comments

By the BPD's own admission, license counterfeiters keep getting better. So what is a bar supposed to do when a patron shows up with ID that cannot be easily distinguished from a fake?

How about we fine each of these kids $5k? Maybe suspend a drivers license for a year or two? Maybe they will think twice about using a fake ID then.

Lets put the onus back on the person who is breaking the law in the first place.

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BPD did apply for criminal charges against them (minor in possession, I think) in Brighton District Court.

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They need to come down hard and set an example.

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C'mon, Mary Ann's? I'm sure they consider this the cost of doing business.

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I have no opinion of the place since I have never been there.

But every week bars are getting hit with this stuff. And these 6 kids are not spending enough to make it worth the fines the bar is going to get hit with.

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Nothing changes

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Do away with the foolish drinking age. Total waste of time and effort.

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It's like watching people insist to Copernicus that the Earth is flat.

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I've been refused from a liquor store for a legitimate Mass license before. There was a slight bend on the edge that for whatever reason prevented it from scanning, so they wouldn't sell me anything. Kind of a PITA but what are you gonna do?

Best part is it was across the street from a police station. You'd think if I were using a fake I'd find a better place to use it.

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Punishment enough?

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What are they supposed to do? They passed the scanner. How is this the bars fault?

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"in possession of forged licenses from other states "

Technically bars aren't supposed to serve alcohol to people with non-Massachusetts licenses.

Yes, it's a painfully dumb rule for a major city that's easily connected to six other states and is home to three major sporting venues and two major convention centers whose sole purpose is to attract out-of-state travelers. And yes, it's still enforced at a lot of bars.

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So, one is supposed to bring their damn passport with them to even get into the place, let alone buy some PBR? What is this, Russia?

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But can you substantiate that with the appropriate section from the MGL? I've heard this trope repeated before, particularly by bouncers, but I wouldn't trust a bouncer to distinguish his ass from his elbow.

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It's not that out of state licenses are illegal. It's that the law holds the bar blameless for a Mass. License or ID but not for an out of state license.

MGL. Ch. 138 S. 34B

Any licensee, or agent or employee thereof, under this chapter who reasonably relies on such a liquor purchase identification card or motor vehicle license issued pursuant to section eight of chapter ninety, or on an identification card issued under section 8E of chapter 90, or on a valid passport issued by the United States government, or by the government, recognized by the United States government, of a foreign country, or a valid United States issued military identification card, for proof of a person’s identity and age shall not suffer any modification, suspension, revocation or cancellation of such license, nor shall he suffer any criminal liability, for delivering or selling alcohol or alcoholic beverages to a person under twenty-one years of age. Any licensee, or agent or employee thereof, under this chapter, who reasonably relies on such a liquor purchase identification card, or an identification card issued under section 8E of chapter 90, or motor vehicle license issued pursuant to said section eight, for proof of a person’s identity and age shall be presumed to have exercised due care in making such delivery or sale of alcohol or alcoholic beverages to a person under twenty-one years of age. Such presumption shall be rebuttable; provided, however, that nothing contained herein shall affect the applicability of section sixty-nine.

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I used to my brothers license in that establishment in the 70's......I did look a little like him :)

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One had a can of Naragansett, another was caught with a Yuengling, another with a Pabst Blue Ribbon, another with a Bud Light and one with a Coors Light.

So young.. so much bad taste in beer. gross.

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?

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oh I know Pete.. Mary Ann's has been around for a while, and I remember going there when I was about that age (Legal age, of course) and I remember slurping down whatever the popular swill was at the time not knowing there were far better beers (and better places to drink them at). ;)

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And the on duty cops would be in there with us!

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They got caught last year for having a food-serving license and not using it (yes, this is an offense that gets you a police citation, which in their case resulted in a hearing, after which they were given a warning), so they applied for and got a license change to be the sort of place that only serves alcohol.

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The kid with the Gansett can stay. At least he's drinking local. The kid with the Coors can pay everyone else's fine.

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It's brewed under contract by Genesee in Rochester, although corporate HQ is back in RI, after several years of being a brand owned by other companies.
"Hi neighbor, have a 'gansett".

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good stuff.

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If the bar ran their IDs through a scanner and could not identify them as fake, how were the officers more capable of discerning the fake IDs?

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They asked the kids for IDs and then asked them some more questions and the kids cracked like eggs, or something.

Mulvey did not detail the specific questions he asked these specific people, but in the past, he's said he often starts just by asking really basic questions, such as what their Zip code is - it's amazing how many people go to all the bother and expense of procuring a fake ID and then don't bother to memorize the information on them, such as their supposed Zip code.

Also, and again, I don't know if they did it this time, but even as good as the newer fakes are, you can still often detect their bogosity by bending the card a bit - the counterfeiters haven't always figured out how to get the laminate to stick to the paper as well as states have, so in many cases the laminate will separate from the paper.

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my brothers zodiac sign once.......had no clue!

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Can't the cops run licenses through a national motor vehicle computer or something?

If a cop suspects you're an underage drinker, what are your rights? Are you allowed to refuse to answer questions?

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I've moved so many times in Boston that who the hell knows what is on my license.

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aren't bad beer, they're decent examples of a pale lager.

Now Bud Light, that's another story.

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Yeung's arrival here and consequent oversaturation actually soured me to the beer I used to look forward to whenever I found myself in PA.

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