News Story


Moorpark Police Conduct Tobacco Sales Compliance Checks
7/9/2015 8:54:00 AM


Nature of Incident:

Tobacco Decoy Sting Operation


Various Retail Locations ' City of Moorpark

Date & Time:

June 30, 2015

Unit(s) Responsible:

Moorpark Police Department Special Enforcement Detail


During April and May 2015, Ventura County Public Health Department's Tobacco Policy Program worked with local law enforcement agencies, and the Law Enforcement Explorer Scouts in the cities of Camarillo, Simi Valley, and Moorpark to conduct assessments of tobacco sales to youth under the age of 18.

After assisting Public Health and observing the businesses that were in fact willing to sell tobacco products to minors under the age of 18, the Moorpark Police Department initiated another compliance check of the same businesses with the intent of enforcement.  During the study by Public Health, nine (9) of twenty-one (21) businesses were apparently willing to sell tobacco products to minors.

On June 12, 2015, members of the Moorpark Police Department Special Enforcement Detail conducted a tobacco compliance check, using minor decoys, in an attempt to purchase tobacco products from businesses in the City of Moorpark.  The goal of these types of operations is to limit minors' access to tobacco products.

The minor decoys attempted to make purchases of tobacco products at eighteen (18) locations throughout the City of Moorpark, including the nine (9) who were willing to sell tobacco to the decoys during the prior compliance check by Public Health.  Cashiers at all of the establishments turned the minor decoys away without selling any tobacco products.

The Moorpark Special Enforcement Detail (SED) has a history of conducting compliance checks and will continue to conduct periodic compliance checks / sting operations dealing with tobacco, alcohol, and spray paint to confirm retailers in the area are doing their part to prevent minors' access to these products in the community.

The Moorpark Police Department sees it as a success that none of the businesses sold tobacco products to the minor decoys during this most recent compliance check.  The success of this operation is due largely in part to the strong partnership between the Sheriff's Office, the Moorpark Police Department and Ventura County Public Health and their commitment to limiting our youth's access to tobacco products. 

Prepared by:

John Wright, Sergeant


News Release Date:

July 8, 2015


Media Follow-Up Contact:

John Wright, Sergeant 805-797-7128


Approved by:

Stephen Wade, Captain



Ventura County Crime Stoppers will pay up to $1,000 reward for information, which leads to the arrest and criminal complaint against the person(s) responsible for this crime.  The caller may remain anonymous.  The call is not recorded.  Call Crime Stoppers at 800-222-TIPS (8477).