Four Monroe businesses allegedly sold e-cigarettes, tobacco to underage patrons

MONROE, CT — Four Monroe businesses were cited for alleged violations of state laws prohibiting the sale of e-cigarettes and/or tobacco products to customers under the age of 21.

The unannounced compliance checks and inspections were performed by the Monroe Police Department and the Connecticut Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services’ Tobacco Prevention and Enforcement Program on Oct. 17, according to a police press release issued Friday.

The establishments found to be in violation were:

  • Monroe Food Mart Corp. Inc., 487 Monroe Turnpike
  • Noble, 195 Monroe Turnpike
  • Stop and Go Food Mart, 612 Main St.
  • Grassy Plains Smoke Shop, 838 Main St.

Retailers are required by state law to inspect the photo I.D. of anyone who appears under the age of 30 before selling a tobacco product or electronic cigarette.

Of the 14 unannounced compliance inspections four establishments were found to be noncompliant with Connecticut General Statutes Section 53-344, according to police. The offending clerks were issued $300 infractions.

Tobacco retailers are licensed by the Connecticut Department of Revenue Services (DRS). Noncompliant inspection results are referred to DRS for possible administrative action.

Tip-A-Cop coming to Jennie’s

The Monroe Police Department will host its annual Tip-A-Cop fundraiser at Jennie’s Pizzeria, 380 Monroe Turnpike, on Nov. 8, from 6 to 9 p.m. The event benefits Special Olympics Connecticut.

Members of law enforcement will volunteer their time to work with restaurant employees, welcoming customers, taking orders and serving meals to diners. All tips officers receive will be used to help Special Olympics Connecticut’s mission of providing life-changing sports, health and fitness programs to athletes of all abilities.

Tip-A-Cop is a Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics Connecticut event. For information, visit soct.org, email [email protected] or call (203) 230-1201.

The Law Enforcement Torch Run is one of the movement’s largest grassroots fundraisers and public awareness vehicles. Every year officers from police departments and law enforcement agencies across the state participate in a three-day run leading up to the Special Olympics Connecticut Summer Games in June.

The program extends throughout the year, as officers also organize and host fundraisers that include, but are not limited to, Tip-a-Cop, Cop-on-Top and Penguin Plunge events.

Thefts from vehicles

Police officers responded to several complaints of thefts from motor vehicles on Monday.

A Flint Ridge Road resident told officers a Ring Camera notification showed someone on foot using a flashlight to check car doors just before 4 a.m. However, video did not show the type of vehicle the suspect was driving nor the direction it was headed, according to police.

At 7:34 a.m., a Captains Hill Road woman told officers someone entered her family’s unlocked work truck sometime overnight and stole the key, as well as a key fob for another vehicle that was parked offsite. Police said the thief could not steal the truck, because it was blocked by a Subaru Crosstrek in the driveway.

Police said the unlocked Subaru Crosstrek was also entered and an envelope containing a copy of the vehicle’s title, registration and approximately $100 to $150 in cash was stolen.

The woman also found a backpack with hunting and fishing equipment belonging to another Captains Hill Road resident, according to the report.

Police said there were no cameras on the property where the vehicles were entered and the residents were advised to lock their doors overnight.

The backpack will be kept at the Monroe Police Department, pending contact from the owner. If it still has not been claimed and the owner is reading this, call the police station’s general number at 203-261-3622.

In another incident, a Bagburn Road resident told officers a friend’s vehicle was entered overnight and a backpack containing medication and work notes was stolen. The victim did not wish to make a formal complaint and only wanted officers to notify him or her if the items were recovered.

As of Friday, police said the backpack was not turned in.

An Oakwood Drive man told police he looked out his window Monday night and noticed the interior light of his son’s white Toyota Forerunner was on. Upon closer inspection, he found the center console was open and $50 cash had been taken after the vehicle was parked and left unlocked.

The resident told police he did not see any vehicle or person, but believed he heard voices in the Gay Bower Road area.

Officers canvassed the neighborhood, but found no other accounts of suspicious activity nor video surveillance, according to the report.

Stolen firewood

Police are investigating the theft of firewood from Stop & Shop, 470 Monroe Turnpike.

On Monday the assistant store manager told officers an elderly White male entered the store on Oct. 27 and Oct. 29 and took firewood without paying for it.

Officers met with Loss Prevention and watched security video showing the man park his van toward the back of the store, fill a carriage with firewood and walk right to his van without paying for the wood on those two dates.

On Oct. 30, the store manager told officers he saw the man in the store again. This time the suspect paid for the items he took. The employee followed him and jotted down the license plate of the van. Police are investigating the lead.

Stolen catalytic converter

On Wednesday morning, the owner of Pools Plus, 401 Monroe Turnpike, told officers a $900 catalytic converter was stolen from her company van.

Police said the owner does not know when the catalytic converter was stolen, adding there are no suspects nor surveillance camera footage in the area where the white 2017 Nissan NV 200 was parked.

However, it is possible that a camera from a nearby business caught the theft on video, police said. Officers are trying to access it as part of their investigation.

Lost & Found

An officer patrolling the Partridge Drive area found two bags in the road Monday night, one was a diaper bag with a floral design. All the pockets were open and diapers, baby wipes and a prescription medicine bottle were inside, police said.

The bottle’s label had the name of a woman from Danbury.

The second bag was an athletic duffle bag containing two pairs of soccer cleats, two pairs of shin guards and a pair of shorts, according to the report.

Police said an attempt to contact the Danbury woman through the city’s police department was unsuccessful based on no resident history there.

The items were brought to the Monroe Police Department and secured as found property until an owner can be contacted. If the owner is reading this, call the department’s general number to claim your belongings at 203-261-3622.

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