An Omaha restaurant has decided to stop selling beer after it was caught selling alcohol to minors during a recent compliance check.
Eight businesses in Douglas and Sarpy Counties recently sold alcohol to minors during the compliance check. Three face mandatory suspensions of alcohol sales for being repeat offenders. And one of those three, Planet Sub, has decided to get out of the beer business.
The three businesses were named Monday in a press release from Project Extra Mile, a statewide organization that focuses on alcohol-related problems.
Facing enhanced penalties are: NP Mart, 5608 Ames Ave., and Planet Sub, 8990 West Center Road, both in Omaha; and Voodoo Taco, 21209 Nebraska Crossing, Gretna.
According to the Nebraska Liquor Control Commission, NP Mart is facing a five-day closure, which means no alcohol sales, and 20 days of suspension that can be paid off with a fine of $100 per day. Both Planet Sub and Voodoo Taco are looking at two days of mandatory closure and 40 days of suspension.
For Planet Sub, the mistaken sales to minors are proof that beer isn’t a good fit for the business, said co-owner David Stiles.
The restaurant has included beer on its menu since it opened in April 2016 as a way to distinguish itself from other sub shops, Stiles said. He estimated that the shop sold 10 to 12 beers a week.
“It’s not worth it,” Stiles said. “I want people to know this isn’t indicative of who we are.”
Employees at Voodoo Taco declined to comment Monday. NP Mart could not be reached for comment.
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The five other businesses are facing their first citation within the past four years. If found guilty, those businesses could be facing 10 to 20 days of suspension that they could choose to pay off at a fine of $50 per day.
Twenty-eight officers from the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office, Omaha Police Department and Sarpy County Sheriff’s Office participated in the two-day underage drinking enforcement effort. The compliance checks were made Friday and Saturday at 227 retail outlets in the two counties.
“The dangers of underage drinking are real; that is why it is so important that we receive assistance from businesses and adults,” said Sgt. Jonathan Raughton of the Sarpy County Sheriff’s Office. “Underage drinking is not only a law enforcement problem, but also a problem for our communities. We need everyone to do the right thing to avoid preventable tragedies.”
To report underage drinking or adults providing alcohol to minors, call the statewide tip line at 1-866-Must-B-21 (687-8221). Call 911 to report an underage drinking party in progress.