LAWRENCE — Police said 61 people under the legal drinking age of 21 bought or attempted to buy alcohol at Mt. Vernon Liquors during a three-day sting involving local police and state inspectors. 

Also, 19 fake IDs were seized during "Operation Fireball," a joint investigation by Lawrence police and the Massachusetts Alcoholic Beverages Control Commission. 

Investigators said they also prevented the delivery of or seized "37 cases of alcoholic beverages to underage individuals, and seized and/or prevented the delivery of approximately 38 bottles of alcoholic beverages to underage individuals," according to a statement. 

The store is facing eight counts of selling alcoholic beverages to underage individuals and must now go before the Lawrence Licensing Board during a future meeting. 

Other violations will be handled by state investigators, police said. 

“Operation Fireball was conducted to inform, educate, prevent, and enforce the laws surrounding underage drinking and the sale of alcoholic beverages to minors. We also wanted to raise awareness of underage drinking and driving especially with high school prom season and graduation upon us," said police Chief Roy Vasque. 

Follow staff reporter Jill Harmacinski on Twitter @EagleTribJill. 


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