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Underage drinking party hosts arrested


On Friday, January 20, a sheriff’s deputy received information from a confidential source that a drinking party involving underage persons was to take place the following evening at a private residence near Buena Vista.  Using FaceBook, the deputy learned that a party was planned to celebrate the seventeenth birthday of a local woman and that forty-seven persons, several of them under the age of twenty-one, had responded to the invitation and were to attend.  The deputy then obtained a search warrant for the premises and at about 10:30pm Saturday, assisted by another deputy and two officers from the Buena Vista Police Department, entered the home where the party was in progress.  

Three persons were arrested.  Alex Canty, 26, the resident, was charged with permitting the serving of alcohol to an underage person.  Jessica Armstrong, 18, a host at the party, was charged with permitting the serving of alcohol to an underage person; and illegal consumption of alcohol by an underage person.  Sam Ortega, 19, was charged with illegal consumption of alcohol by an underage person.

Canty and Armstrong were jailed on $1500 bonds each.  Ortega was released on summons.

A marijuana smoking pipe and a small quantity of marijuana were seized during the search of the residence.

Investigation into this incident continues and additional charges may be filed. 

The Sheriff’s Office will be following this case as it winds its way through the court process.  Citizen input from community forums held in October clearly indicated that the community has a strong interest in preventing underage access to alcohol and drugs and desires to see robust enforcement and prosecution of offenders.