July 5, 2013
MORE ON THAT VIRGINIA SCANDAL: 911 calls released in ABC bust of UVa student.
Agents suspected one of the women was underage and carrying a case of beer, ABC said. Instead, it was LaCroix sparkling water. The women said they didn’t know the agents were officers. Six agents closed in at the height of the incident. One drew a gun.
Frightened, University of Virginia student Elizabeth Daly, 20, drove her and her roommates out of the lot, grazing two agents with her SUV, according to court records.
None was hurt, but that netted Daly a night in jail on charges that were withdrawn more than two months later. The case has cast ABC into a storm of scrutiny since word of it broke in The Daily Progress a week ago.
ABC officials said last week they are reviewing the incident for a second time. The frantic call, placed from the SUV as the women drove off planning to find a police station, helped spur prosecutors to drop the case. . . . ABC has declined to identify the agent who drew his weapon.
These agents should be fired, and probably prosecuted. And if Virginia wants to move into the
21st late 20th century, it could abolish its Alcoholic Beverage Commission.
UPDATE: Reader Karl Bock writes: “Besides getting us pretty riled up here in Charlottesville, this is another example of the continued nationwide trend towards the militarization of bureaucracies at the federal, state and local level. Armed ABC agents running a parking lot sting operation aimed at underaged drinkers is just calling down a potential tragedy. There is simply no reason for those guys to be armed under those circumstances. It’s not like they were raiding stills up in the hollers of Nelson County.” Indeed.