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Police prepare for underage drinkers during prom season

[Source KSWO] [Source KSWO]

LAWTON, OK (KSWO)- For many high school students prom is just around the corner.

In an effort to reduce underage drinking during this time of the year, the Lawton Ft. Sill Community Coalition kicked off their Sequins and Sirens training initiative.


This is the third year the group will collaborate with Lawton Police Department Academy to train incoming police cadets on how to keep kids safe.

Expensive dresses and suits, limousines and hotels...prom season is normally viewed as a rite of passage for many high school students.

But to Sequins and Sirens director Todd Anthony, the season opens the door of opportunity for underage drinking.

"This time of year is just not always the best," said Anthony.

Studies show 40 percent of high schoolers admit to consuming alcohol, so it's important for officers to be familiar with the environments where it happens, and how to spot it.

Anthony said the program will take officers through extensive training.

“Have some role players come in and give them the feelings and reps in a controlled environment of what a party will feel like and what to do,” said Anthony. “Sort of the best practices for that."

Officer David Castro of the Cache Police Department will take part in the training.

He said prom season is a time for awareness not only for students but parents as well.

"It's definitely scary not even from an officer standpoint but as a father,” said Castro. “I’m raising two daughters also and knowing kids are experiencing with alcohol."

Castro said parents who plan to hold prom after-parties need to be aware of Oklahoma's Social Host Law. 

They could face consequences for not necessarily providing alcohol to minors but providing the place to drink.

"If your underage kids bring their friends over for a party and they are consuming alcohol inside your residence or wherever it maybe you can be charged with a social host law,” said Castro. “You are liable for those minors."

He said his hope is that this season students and drivers will stay safe during this time.

"We are going to be out in full force,” said Castro. “We are going to be out patrolling and don't drink and drive and you won't get in trouble."

 

You can find a list of upcoming prom dates below.

Copyright 2017 KSWO. All rights reserved.

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Comanche County Proms 2017:

Fletcher: April 1

Cache: April 8

Chattanooga: April 8

Lawton MacArthur: April 8 (at the Hilton Garden Inn)

Sterling: April 14 (at Cameron University)

Elgin: April 22

Geronimo: April 22

Lawton Christian: April 22

Lawton High: April 29 (at Great Plains Expo Building)

Lawton Eisenhower: April 29 (at Cameron University)

Indiahoma: May 12


 

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