Police in Lenexa, Ks., go on weekend party patrols to break up teen gatherings where alcohol is being consumed, the Kansas City Star reports. “I’ve been working on this problem for 25 years now, and I can tell you the problem is getting worse,” said principal Karl Krawitz of Shawnee Mission West High School. In recent months, high school and college students have died of alcohol poisoning in Colorado and Oklahoma.
In Lenexa, officers in unmarked cars patrol the streets. Some follow carloads of teens to see whether they lead to a party. Others watch liquor stores, hoping to catch underage customers making purchases. An assistant district attorney is on call to provide support if search warrants are required. “We want to make Johnson County an inhospitable place to have teen alcohol parties,” District Attorney Paul Morrison said. Kansas enacted a law last year that allows prosecutors to charge adults who knowingly allow their children to drink alcohol. Several parents already have served “shock time” in jail for having such parties. That law was prompted by the efforts of a Lenexa woman whose teenage son was killed in a traffic collision after leaving an underage drinking party.