For many High School Grads, it’s that time of year to celebrate the end of an era and the beginning of another and sometimes that celebrating may involve alcohol and drugs.
On Sat., April 27, officers with RCMP West Kootenay Integrated Road Safety Unit and West Kootenay Traffic along with Castlegar and Nelson RCMP Detachments were alerted to a large outdoor grad party taking place at the Pass Creek ball fields. Police checked about 400 vehicles headed into the area which resulted in 50 liquor seizures from underage youths and two impaired drivers taken off the road. One partier was taken to the hospital by BC Ambulance for an apparent alcohol and drug overdose.
We are very supportive of our youth celebrating, but these kinds of parties can pose a significant danger to the partiers and the public on a number of different fronts," said Sgt. Chad Badry. "Traffic Services primary objective is to keep the roads safe, but as we saw here, there are dangers to youths overconsuming and making poor decisions as a result of consumption of alcohol and drugs.
Police are urging grads and their parents to think about the ramifications of hosting or attending alcohol and drug fueled underage parties. In this instance, the party was in a public space which is simply not permitted. In this age of permissive parenting, many parents see these parties as a right of passage and would rather have youths consume in a controlled environment. However, there can be legal consequences for the host and grad. If an overdose of alcohol or drugs happens or a youth gets behind the wheel of a vehicle and crashes, there could also be criminal or civil liability for the party host. If there is an overdose, the Good Samaritan Drug Overdose Act will protect those seeking medical or law enforcement assistance in the case of a drug overdose from prosecution for drug possession offences.
Anyone with information about an illegal grad party should call their local police.