Albany, NY - July 20, 2016 - The New York State Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) today announced 60 weekend arrests during the latest round of “Operation Prevent” sweeps, which are designed to deter underage drinking in local communities and keep New York’s roadways safe. From Friday, July 15 through Sunday, July 17, investigators from DMV’s Division of Field Investigation teamed up with the New York State Park Police and law enforcement agencies to conduct sweeps at Darien Lake Performing Arts Center in Genesee County, Saratoga Performing Arts Center (SPAC), Nikon at Jones Beach Theater (Jones Beach State Park), and in New York City, during which 64 fake IDs were confiscated.
Governor Cuomo announced in June that the state would continue its push to ensure that the public, and especially New York’s youth, remain safe and well-protected during the summer concert season.
Operation Prevent is a DMV initiative conducted year-round that targets not only concerts, but bars and drinking establishments, events, and other underage hot spots. During an Operation Prevent sweep, state investigators work with a number of different entities to check identification documents. Patrons under the age of 21 found to be using fake IDs or false documents with the intent of purchasing alcohol can be arrested and have their license revoked for a minimum of 90 days or up to one year.
11 arrests in New York City: Friday, July 15
On July 15, DMV, in cooperation with the New York City Police Department, conducted sweeps at Saloon NYC, The Stumble Inn, and Mad River Bar and Grille in New York City. Investigators made 11 arrests for possession of fraudulent licenses. Of the confiscated licenses, six were from Connecticut. Investigators also confiscated one false document each from New Jersey, Florida, Rhode Island, New York, and Delaware
22 arrests at Toby Keith concert at Darien Lake Performing Arts Center: Friday, July 15
On July 15, DMV investigators, in cooperation with the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office, arrested 22 individuals – making 13 arrests for attempting to use fraudulent driver licenses to purchase alcohol at the Toby Keith concert at Darien Lake, and 11 arrests for consuming alcohol underage. Two of the individuals were issued two separate summonses. DMV investigators confiscated a number of counterfeit licenses, including five from Pennsylvania, three from Rhode Island, two from Ohio, and one each from New Jersey, Delaware, and Connecticut. Three individuals were arrested for possession of another person’s New York State driver license.
15 arrests at Dave Matthews Band concert at SPAC: Saturday, July 16
On July 16, DMV investigators, in cooperation with New York State Park Police, conducted Operation Prevent sweeps at one of two annual Dave Matthews Band shows at SPAC. Investigators arrested 15 individuals for attempting to use fraudulent driver licenses to purchase alcohol. DMV investigators confiscated a number of counterfeit licenses, including six each from Pennsylvania and Rhode Island, four from Connecticut, two each from New Jersey and South Carolina, and one each for Maryland and Illinois, some of which were abandoned. In addition, State Park Police charged four individuals with driving while intoxicated and issued 70 tickets for various violations at SPAC on July 15 and 16.
12 arrests at Florida Georgia Line concert at Jones Beach: Sunday, July 17
On July 17, DMV investigators, in cooperation with New York State Park Police, conducted their first-ever Operation Prevent sweep at the Florida Georgia Line concert at Jones Beach. The details led to the arrests of 12 individuals and resulted in the confiscation of 18 false driver licenses. DMV investigators confiscated a number of counterfeit licenses, including eight from Connecticut, four from New Jersey, two each from Delaware and Maryland, and one from Rhode Island, some of which were abandoned. One individual was arrested for possession of someone else’s New York driver license. In addition, State Park Police made two arrests for criminal mischief and assault, and issued 17 tickets for various violations.
At SPAC and Jones Beach, DMV investigators confiscated a number of abandoned fake IDs. Investigators plan to look into these abandoned documents and possibly pursue further charges at a later date.
Last year, Governor Cuomo announced a similar statewide crackdown, which took place at concert venues that included SPAC, Darien Lake Performing Arts Center, and CMAC in Canandaigua. This year, Operation Prevent has expanded to additional venues, including Nikon at Jones Beach Theater and the Lakeview Amphitheater.
Operation Prevent investigations are funded by the Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee (GTSC) to deter underage drinking and keep New York’s roadways safe. DMV also conducts operations at the request of bar owners, law enforcement, and the SLA in larger cities and college towns.