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Store clerk breaks ‘Blue Law’

WOODLAND – A convenience store clerk learned the hard way here this weekend that it’s illegal to sell alcoholic beverages on Sunday within the town limits of Woodland.

Jamal Abu-Yasin, 42, of Woodland was arrested for violating the town’s &uot;Blue Law&uot; – town ordinance 5.01 that prohibits the sale of beer and wine on Sundays.

According to Woodland Police Chief Don Ryan, he has been receiving complaints that this type of activity was occurring at Rite Way Food Store, located at 407 East Main Street.

Ryan solicited the assistance of a Northampton County Sheriff’s deputy who, dressed in plain clothes as part of an undercover investigation, entered the store on Jan. 16 at which time he was allowed to purchase alcoholic beverages.

Ryan was waiting nearby. Once the purchase was made, Ryan entered the store and arrested Abu-Yasin. The store clerk was taken to the Northampton County Jail under a $400 bond. His court date has been set for Feb. 17.

Chief Ryan said he was in the process of contacting ALE (Alcohol Law Enforcement) in regards to this violation. Ryan stated he was not sure of what type of action ALE would take against the owner of the convenience store.

&uot;It’s possible that the store may temporarily lose its permit to sell alcoholic beverages, but that decision is left in the hands of ALE,&uot; said Ryan.

While he was unsure of what actions ALE may take in this matter, Ryan was sure that this arrest will send a loud and clear message to other stores that sell beer and wine within the town.

&uot;The sale of beer and wine will not be tolerated in the town of Woodland on Sundays,&uot; Ryan noted. &uot;That is the wish of our elected leaders and it’s my job to uphold that law.&uot;

Ryan said he was appreciative of the help from the Northampton County Sheriff’s Office in making this arrest.

Other Northampton County towns permit beer and wine sales on Sundays. It is left to the discretion of each town government to decide that issue.