The state Division of Alcoholic Beverage Control has charged the Forked River House with serving apparently intoxicated persons and underage persons on a number of occasions.
The ABC wants to suspend the restaurant's house license for 180 days, according to an ABC release.
“Myriad dangers result from serving patrons too much alcohol or serving those under 21," Acting Attorney General John J. Hoffman said. "An intoxicated person can unleash deadly consequences behind the wheel, and study after study has shown the physical and emotional harm caused by underage drinking. Licensees who ignore these dangers and break the law must face appropriate penalties.”
Forked River House served alcohol to six persons who were "actually or
allegedly intoxicated" between August of 2012 and March of 2013, the ABC
"In each of those occasions, those patrons were later arrested by local police departments for driving while intoxicated," the release states. "The Blood Alcohol Content for each of those drivers ranged from .15 percent to .21 percent.
"Safety on New Jersey’s roads begins with responsible service at New Jersey’s bars and restaurants,” ABC Director Michael Halfacre said. “Owning a liquor license in New Jersey can be a fantastic investment, but that license brings with it many responsibilities, including making sure that your customers are not being served to a point of intoxication.”
The Division also charged the Porta in Asbury Park served served alcohol to underage persons on two occasions. The state is pursuing a 60-day suspension for Porta, according to the release.
The charges against Porta stem from two undercover investigations in the summer of 2012. On June 9, the investigators arrested two 20-year-old women for consuming alcohol underage. A month later, investigators arrested a 20-year-old woman.
Both establishments can plead guilty, not guilty or non-vult (no contest), to the charges. If they are found guilty of the allegations, the establishments would be required to cease serving alcohol for the term of their license suspensions, the ABC said.
Halfacre said the ABC’s “Cops in Shops” Summer Shore initiative, which provides grants for local police departments to target underage purchasers of alcohol at liquor stores, has already resulted in 42 arrests.
ABC detectives have conducted nearly 2,700 investigations in the past 12 months at licensed establishments in New Jersey, he said.