News

The New Gen Ed Lottery System, Explained

News

Armed Individuals Sighted in Harvard Square Arraigned

News

Harvard Students Form Coalition Supporting Slave Photo Lawsuit's Demands

News

Police Apprehend Armed Man and Woman in Central Square

News

107 Faculty Called for Review of Tenure Procedures in Letter to Dean Gay

City Sting Finds Underage Drinking

By Marios V. Broustas

A city investigation of underage drinking at Harvard Square's Spaghetti Club earlier this year discovered that roughly a third of those patrons randomly selected for a liquor sting were below the drinking age.

City investigator Andrea Boyer reported to Cambridge's Licensing Commission last week that three of eight randomly-selected patrons whose identification cards were checked were under the age of 21.

The commission took the findings of the investigation under advisement.

The sting was launched after the city received an anonymous complaint in January, according to Boyer, who conducted the operation with Leon Lishley of the Cambridge police.

Boyer and Lishley visited seven Square bars on January 26, and revisited five of the seven on February 2, Boyer said. They questioned two males and two females in each establishment.

The Spaghetti Club and the Crimson Sports Grille were both discovered to have admitted patrons without proper identification.

The Grille will face the three member Licensing Commission on April 25.

Although specific information on the patrons who were discovered engaging in under age drinking was not released, they may be arrested and forcedto stand trial.

On January 26, Boyer asked one male student whowas sitting at the bar next to a pitcher of beerfor the identification he used to enter the club.But the picture on the New York stateidentification card that the student showed Boyerdid not look anything like him.

That same night Lishley approached a femaleBentley College student who said she gainedentrance to the club with her friend'sidentification.

And on February 2, Lishley interviewed a malewho gained entrance to the Spaghetti Club with acounter feit Army reserve identification.

The Club's bouncer, Christopher Bourget--who isa member of the army reserves--told the commissionthat he thought the identification was genuine.

"I thought that was the person," said Bourget.

But Capt. Henry Breen, who serves on thecommission, criticized Bourget and Spaghetti ClubManager John Brown for allowing minors into theirestablishment.

"All of these people went to a course and wereinstructed on how to check identifications," saidBreen. "One of the ID's did not match the[patron's] face and the other was a reserve IDwhich was...torn."

Carolyn Conway, the Club's lawyer, said that itis harder to nab out-of-state counterfeitidentifications.

But Richard V. Scali, the LicensingCommission's executive director, said that barsaccept out-of-state identifications at their ownrisk.

And Breen recommended that outside contractorsbe hired to check identifications, standardpractice at local establishments such as JohnHarvard's Brew House.

Conway and the Spaghetti Club made noindication that they would change their currentcarding policy.

In an interview yesterday, Dean of the CollegeL. Fred Jewett '57 said that strict enforcement ofdrinking age by local establishments is a must.

"My own feeling would be that if we are goingto have the [drinking age] law it ought to bereasonably enforced," Jewett said. "My ownpersonal observation is that there is not aserious effort on the part of the [bars and clubs]to keep people out."

But Conway said verifying that all patrons aremore than 21 years of age is difficult in acollege town.

"It's not a perfect society, [but] we'll doeverything we can," said Conway. "We can say thatgiven what the situation is, we're doing the bestthat we can."

Dean of Students Archie C. Epps III said heassumes that Harvard students are not part ofunder-age drinking problem.

"I don't assume that our students are breakingthe law," Epps said. "It would surprise you toknow that I have a very high opinion of[students].

On January 26, Boyer asked one male student whowas sitting at the bar next to a pitcher of beerfor the identification he used to enter the club.But the picture on the New York stateidentification card that the student showed Boyerdid not look anything like him.

That same night Lishley approached a femaleBentley College student who said she gainedentrance to the club with her friend'sidentification.

And on February 2, Lishley interviewed a malewho gained entrance to the Spaghetti Club with acounter feit Army reserve identification.

The Club's bouncer, Christopher Bourget--who isa member of the army reserves--told the commissionthat he thought the identification was genuine.

"I thought that was the person," said Bourget.

But Capt. Henry Breen, who serves on thecommission, criticized Bourget and Spaghetti ClubManager John Brown for allowing minors into theirestablishment.

"All of these people went to a course and wereinstructed on how to check identifications," saidBreen. "One of the ID's did not match the[patron's] face and the other was a reserve IDwhich was...torn."

Carolyn Conway, the Club's lawyer, said that itis harder to nab out-of-state counterfeitidentifications.

But Richard V. Scali, the LicensingCommission's executive director, said that barsaccept out-of-state identifications at their ownrisk.

And Breen recommended that outside contractorsbe hired to check identifications, standardpractice at local establishments such as JohnHarvard's Brew House.

Conway and the Spaghetti Club made noindication that they would change their currentcarding policy.

In an interview yesterday, Dean of the CollegeL. Fred Jewett '57 said that strict enforcement ofdrinking age by local establishments is a must.

"My own feeling would be that if we are goingto have the [drinking age] law it ought to bereasonably enforced," Jewett said. "My ownpersonal observation is that there is not aserious effort on the part of the [bars and clubs]to keep people out."

But Conway said verifying that all patrons aremore than 21 years of age is difficult in acollege town.

"It's not a perfect society, [but] we'll doeverything we can," said Conway. "We can say thatgiven what the situation is, we're doing the bestthat we can."

Dean of Students Archie C. Epps III said heassumes that Harvard students are not part ofunder-age drinking problem.

"I don't assume that our students are breakingthe law," Epps said. "It would surprise you toknow that I have a very high opinion of[students].

Want to keep up with breaking news? Subscribe to our email newsletter.

Tags