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Only one store fails latest alcohol sting

Out of 10 stores tested Monday during the latest round of a Medford police operation where an underage police decoy tries to buy alcohol, the Shell Bi-Mor gas station on Crater Lake Avenue was the only one to sell to a minor, police reported.

The Bi-Mor station, which was also hit by the sting on Dec. 9, failed both times it was tested, though with different clerks, a Medford police news release said.

Medford police for the third time in two months conducted the operation to check retailers' compliance with Oregon Liquor Control Commission rules.

Police choose stores at random from the area's pool of OLCC licensees, the release said.

In the sting, volunteers between the ages of 18 and 20 try to buy alcoholic beverages at 10 locations, presenting their real identification when asked, the release said.

"(Decoys) are prohibited from deceptive tactics or lying, and have passed a criminal background check," said the release.

Police said the purpose of the program is to monitor and educate OLCC licensees on the legal and proper sale of alcoholic beverages in Medford, and to reduce minors' access to alcoholic beverages.

Stores in compliance included: Walmart, 1360 Center Drive; WinCo Foods, 251 E. Barnett Road; Sports Park Snack & Shine, 3082 Samike Drive; Country Store, 1670 Kings Highway; Stewart Market, 1135, Lozier Lane; Sherm's Thunderbird Market, 2347 W. Main St.; West Main Liquor Store, 2060 W. Main St.; HK Spirit Gas and Mart, 1325 Court St.

In the previous operations, both of which took place in December, seven stores sold alcohol to a police-decoy minor. Four stores were in violation during the first operation and three were in violation the second time.