- The Washington Times - Monday, June 5, 2006

HAUSER, Ore. (AP) — A store owner is fighting a fine he received after one of his clerks sold beer to an underage decoy, claiming the young woman was scantily dressed.

The clerk claimed the decoy looked 21, and he was distracted — so distracted that he didn’t see the “Minor until 2007” stamped on her driver’s license.

Store owner David Cardwell said he will close his store for a week rather than pay his $1,320 fine. The clerk had to pay $750.

“This young woman was dressed in very provocative clothing more suited for the bedroom,” Mr. Cardwell said in a letter to the Oregon Liquor Control Commission (OLCC). “I would not allow my daughter to leave the house dressed in such a way.”

Mr. Cardwell did not deny his employee erred but said the fine imposed for the February incident was hardly fair. He said the law should target clerks and servers, not the owners.

“We feel we did everything right,” Mr. Cardwell wrote. “We trained [our clerk] correctly. We tested him correctly.”

Gary Francis, the local OLCC agent who coordinates the stings and hires the decoys, said the decoy was dressed in a tank top, attire many women her age wear.

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