For a large number of teenagers, drinking and partying are normal occurrences on weekends during the high school years. The Thurston County Prosecutor’s Office knows this and is not standing for it. With the drinking age set at 21, anybody under that is breaking the law when consuming alcohol, no matter how harmless the activity may seem. That’s why officers are cracking down and have formed Party Intervention Patrols, better known as PIPs.
Over the weekend, 10 minors were arrested at a party in Lacey. They were found to be intoxicated, and were all between 17 and 20 years old. Several neighbors had called police to alert them of a loud house party before the arrests were made.
“Kids will be kids,” some say, but kids, like adults, can also make bad decisions when under the influence of alcohol. That is why Thurston County has implemented their Target Zero plan. They hope to eliminate traffic fatalities and serious injuries by the year 2030. They are starting with keeping an extra eye out for young, inexperienced drivers as well as impaired drivers. The PIPs are a big part of their plan. PIPs were originally put to use in Pierce County. Minors arrested by PIP must attend a private one-on-one session with a trained chemical-dependency expert. There, they talk about their alcohol and drug consumption and learn about resources that they can turn to. Additionally, the parents of the minor in question are brought in to discuss their child’s life choices with them and the expert.