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Shop where ‘one year old assaulted’ loses licence

By Tom Dare | Birmingham | Crime | Published:

A shop where a one-year-old was allegedly assaulted during a row over underage drinking has been stripped of its licence to serve alcohol.

Broad News/Yardley Cut Price had its licence revoked following a hearing on Monday, where it was revealed that the shop sold alcohol to a 15-year-old girl during a test purchase by Trading Standards in February.

The test purchase followed a police incident last November involving the shop, which resulted in accusations that a one-year-old child had been assaulted by a staff member.

The incident in question took place when the mother of a 15-year-old boy confronted the shop owners over alcohol found in her son’s room, which he said had been supplied by Broad News.

The confrontation resulted in an altercation between the boy’s mother, her partner, and two staff members, in which it is alleged that the mother’s one-year-old was hit in the face.

The shop claims that it was the mother and her partner who were the aggressors during the incident, with both making complaints to police over assault and racism. Unfortunately the shop’s CCTV, which could have provided evidence for what happened, was deleted three days after the incident.

During the hearing on Monday, a representative for the shop argued that the incident involving the one-year-old was immaterial to the matter at hand, adding that he thought it unjust to revoke the licence of a shop that had had just one incident in 11 years.

He also questioned the methods of the police in collecting evidence and how old the 15-year-old who was served alcohol really looked, something which an officer from Trading Standards addressed in his summing up.

“Trading Standards always makes sure when we have underage volunteers that look representative of their age,” the representative from Trading Standards said.

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“It’s important to make sure that that’s the case, because otherwise the whole exercise is really pointless. So the girls would have been very representative of their age of 14/15 years old.

“Secondly, it is part of any licence that the owner should operate a challenge 21 policy, so regardless of whether the person selling thought the girls were over 18 or not, with a challenge 21 policy in place she should have challenged them anyway.

“What she didn’t do was ask their age at all, which shows me that they’ve completely failed to uphold this mandatory condition to have a challenge 21 policy in place. And really to me that’s the crux of the whole thing – that they sold alcohol to a 15-year-old girl, without asking age, who looked her age, and following on from advice we’d given them a few months before, and following on from a complaint from a member of the public that a 15-year-old was sold alcohol from the shop before.

“It’s clearly been failure, failure, failure, all the way through.”

Tom Dare

By Tom Dare

Local Democracy Reporting Service

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