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Groups Target Underage Drinking As Graduation Approaches

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Aired 5/21/10

Police and community groups, focused on underage drinking, say the coming graduation season can be a time for parents to worry.

— Police and community groups, focused on underage drinking, say the coming graduation season can be a time for parents to worry.

In San Diego, police say June is second only to the Christmas holiday season in its incidents of drunk driving and alcohol-related collisions.

Assistant San Diego police chief Boyd Long says it's largely due to the numerous graduations and high-school prom celebrations. He said when it comes to underage drinkers parents are very often the source of the alcohol.

"We have found that time and time again," said Long. "Where a parent actually commits to buying the alcohol, thinking that if they put the alcohol at a safe location - a house or a hotel room - that the children are, or the minors are, actually going to stay there and consume alcohol."

He said in June of 2009, San Diego saw a 15 percent increase in alcohol-related car crashes, compared to June of the previous year. Long said parents can help keep kids safe by knowing where they are on graduation night and who's throwing the party.

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