TikTok video shows Sault teen buying alcohol in LCBO dressed as senior, wearing mask
SUDBURY -- In the latest of the never-ending series of social media challenges, an 18-year-old from Sault Ste. Marie recorded herself dressing up as a senior to buy alcohol.
The video, which was posted on TikTok, was recorded July 12. It shows her friend helping her dress as an older woman before heading out to two Sault Ste. Marie LCBOs around 6 p.m. Helping her disguise was the fact she had to wear a mask covering her face as part of COVID-19 restrictions.
In an interview with CTV News, she said her friend helped her get ready and went with her to the liquor store. She had never been inside one before, and was a little nervous.
"I was kind of scared," said the girl, who CTV is not naming. "When I got in the store, I was OK."
While she was nervous and felt like everyone was staring at her, she said the disguise worked without a hitch. The first store was in the Market Mall.
"We didn't think it was going to work, we thought I would be escorted out by security," she said. "I looked at cheap wine. Then saw Twisted Tea, didn't find anything, so just grabbed the Twisted Tea."
Not sure what to expect, the teen said she didn't make eye contact with the cashier. The clerk asked her if she needed help carrying it outside, and she shook her head no.
At the second location, on Great Northern Road, she said the clerk asked if she had Air Miles as he rang up her 26-ounce bottle of vodka.
In response to a request for comment from CTV News, the LCBO said in a statement it has policies in place to prevent such occurrences.
"As masks are encouraged, and in some cases mandatory, in our stores, our employees are required to request the removal of masks in any situation related to the checking of ID, for age verification or for signs of intoxication," the statement said.
"Our retail store teams are aware of this situation and will continue to work diligently to prevent the sale of beverage alcohol to minors."
"The LCBO takes selling beverage alcohol responsibly seriously and have maintained the policies and procedures required as part of our Responsible Service Program throughout COVID-19."
Lincoln Louttit of the Sault Police Service said they were notified about the video by a member of the public Friday morning.
"It’s concerning," Louttit said. "There are rules in place for a reason -- health and safety for minors is first and foremost. If it is proven that these people are under age, they could be subject to fines associated with the Liquor (License) Act."
He said these types of offences generally result in a $110 fine, but "there are circumstance when the penalty could potentially be more severe or other charges could be laid."
A spokesperson for Algoma Public Health said there are circumstances when a clerk can ask a customer to remove their mask.
"For identification purposes, the removal of the face mask or face covering would be permitted for brief/limited time as long as the other precautions (e.g. LCBO/Beer stores with Plexiglas) and all other protective measures, including physical distancing are in place," the health unit said in a statement.
As for the teen in the video, she told CTV news she will definitely not try the stunt again.
With files from Jairus Patterson