OIU, DOLC Issues Reminder as Halloween Season Approaches

COLUMBUS, Ohio — This Halloween season, Ohioans may see more than stranger things at their neighborhood bar or local gathering. Alcohol violations such as underage drinking, over-serving, and other violations such as illegal sales may be seen surrounding Halloween. The Ohio Department of Commerce’s Division of Liquor Control (DOLC) and the Ohio Investigative Unit (OIU) would like to remind bars and liquor permit holders to follow state liquor laws.

“While Halloween parties and gatherings are fun, they can turn dangerous quickly,” said OIU Commander Erik Lockhart. “Businesses and individuals that hold gatherings must follow Ohio’s laws and rules to provide a safe environment for all involved.”

For locations without proper licenses, operating without a valid permit is against the law. Consumers can use the DOLC search lists of online permits to determine if a venue is illegally selling alcohol. 

“We have a great working relationship with OIU and together continue to protect Ohioans on the criminal and administrative fronts,” said DOLC Superintendent Jim Canepa.

For this Halloween season and all year, OIU agents and DOLC officials encourage liquor-permitted establishments to keep patron safety at top of their minds. Staff should:

  • Ensure age verification even if it means asking patrons to remove their facial coverings of costumes.
  • Don’t serve intoxicated patrons.
  • Prevent any individual from tampering with someone else’s drink.

Anyone who has information about selling or furnishing alcohol to underage, over-serving patrons or other Ohio liquor law violations can contact their local OIU District office found here https://oiu.ohio.gov/help-center/oiu-district/oiu-district-contacts-resource. In addition, OIU will refer any violations of Ohio liquor law that fall under the jurisdiction of the DOLC.