Lower Mills liquor store nabbed for selling beer to a teenager

The owner of a Lower Mills liquor store nabbed for selling beer to a Quincy teen vows to keep it from happening again.

Police spotted what appeared to be a suspiciously young guy load an 18-pack of Coors Light in the back of his car on Nov. 6 and drive away from Metamorphosis, 1153 Washington St. in Lower Mills, a C-11 sergeant told the Boston Licensing Board at a hearing on Tuesday. When officers stopped him on Gallivan Boulevard, they learned from his license he was just 16. His mother was summoned to retrieve him and his two young female companions.

Owner Ted Retzos acknowledged selling him the beer and that he did not ask for ID. He said the kid had been in the store earlier and had shown a fake ID, which he thought was real and which is why he did not ask him for an ID for the beer purchase.

Through his lawyer, David Keenan, Retzos said he has signed up for advanced training in ferreting out fake IDs and will be buying a license scanner, of the sort normally used by nightclubs, to help reduce fakery.

Keenan said Retzos was "aghast" when he learned the kid was just 16 and that even before taking classes, he's already "confiscated a number of fake licenses," and turned away a number of Curry College students who tried to use their student IDs to make purchases.

Acting Board Chairman Michael Connolly warned Retzos to keep it up. "I'm troubled whenever I hear somebody drove up from Quincy to buy beer," he said. "Once an individual finds a place where they can buy beer, boy, the message is sent quickly and they are line up left and right. This is the first violation and let's trust we're not going to have another."

At a meeting today, the board issued a formal "warning," which could be used to mete out extra punishment should the place get in trouble again.