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The Cheektowaga Police Department, continuing a crackdown on sales of alcohol and cigarettes to young people, will hold another program aimed at educating sales clerks and retailers about the state's age restrictions for such purchases.

The program, also sponsored by the town Youth Bureau, will be held at 6 p.m. Thursday in the Alexander Community Center, Alexander and Straley avenues, Cheektowaga.

Cheektowaga police on Nov. 24 used a 17-year-old decoy to make purchases of cigarettes and charged sales clerks at six French Road stores with tobacco sales to an underage customer, a Class B misdemeanor.

Lt. M. James Starr, head of the vice and tactical unit, said the police will continue to use decoys to enforce the age limits -- 18 for tobacco, 21 for alcoholic beverages -- because a recent study of Cheektowaga young people shows alcohol and tobacco use at an early age can lead to use of other drugs.

He said Thursday's training program, the fourth in a series, is part of the effort to inform businesses about the

"We're trying to make sure the business community is getting the message about the legal issues in underaged sales," Starr said.

"We're giving them every opportunity to comply. We hope they get the message so we don't have to make arrests," Starr added.

Reservations are not needed to attend the session.

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