Liquor Law Enforcement
The Colorado Liquor Enforcement Division oversees:
- Licensing of Colorado Liquor Industry
- Enforcement of Colorado's liquor laws
- Enforcement of Colorado tobacco laws in compliance with federal mandates
Liquor law enforcement in Colorado includes both criminal and administrative (license) sanctions for law violators. Typically, individuals are cited criminally for liquor law violations and licensed businesses are cited administratively. Criminal sanctions for most liquor law violations range from class II petty offenses up to class I misdemeanors. The Liquor code contains one felony provision, which occurs when a licensee permits illegal gambling to occur on their licensed premises. Both Division investigators and local law enforcement agencies have the authority to investigate liquor law violations.
The Division investigates a wide range of complaints including, but not limited to:
- Regulatory compliances
- Food service
- Alcohol purchases source
- Sales to minors
- Sales to intoxicated
- Wholesale trade practices
- Hidden ownership
- Conduct of establishment.
The Division's enforcement program ensures a uniform statewide enforcement effort that is not subject to local law enforcement budget or political constraints.
The Division's enforcement section also conducts license compliance inspections and provides training classes to local law enforcement, local licensing authorities, liquor industry, and interested public groups.