On Monday, December 26, 2011, Polk County Sheriff’s School Resource deputies, along with the assistance of a PCSO Explorer (Explorers are high school student volunteers), conducted “Operation Pop Top” in an effort to combat the illegal sale of alcohol and tobacco to minors. The operation was conducted in the Winter Haven area.
Eight stores were checked, and six of them were found in compliance with Florida State Statutes.
The following clerks were arrested and charged with one count each Sale of Alcohol to Person Under 21 Years of Age:
Denise M. Erickson, DOB 2/27/1966, of 901 Sunshine Way SE in Winter Haven. Erickson works at the 7-11 sotre located at 101 US Hwy 17 South in Winter Haven;
Swatiben B. Patel, DOB 11/12/1983, of 1755 Lake Hill Drive in Winter Haven. Patel works at the Rightway Foods/Citgo located at 4850 Cypress Gardens Road in Winter Haven.
The clerks at the following stores refused to sell alcohol to the minor: