State suspends license of Fresno market where Los Banos teen drank before live streaming fatal crash

Friday, May 11, 2018
EMBED <>More Videos

The state has suspended the alcoholic beverage license of a Fresno market where alcohol was provided to a teen who drank before live streaming fatal crash.

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Anthony Mendez could not believe his neighborhood convenience, Lewis Market in Central Fresno now has its liquor license suspended for the next 20 days.

"I usually see them ID, I'm kinda shocked," Mendez said.

The Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) says an investigation revealed a customer bought beer from the store for 18-year-old Obdulia Sanchez back in July of last year.

The teenager made national headlines, after driving under the influence of alcohol and crashing a car in Los Banos that killed her 14-year-old sister Jacqueline Sanchez. The entire accident streamed live on Instagram.

RELATED: 18-year-old woman arrested after live streaming deadly crash near Los Banos

ABC supervising agent, Jason Montgomery, says an employee of the Lewis Market knew the alcohol would land in the hands of a minor.

"Through the investigation, there were statements made, and there was some video to link it to that market," Montgomery told action news.

The agency wants to send a clear message that any store selling alcohol for a minor will be held accountable.

"Just because they have someone that is 21 years of age if they go off and provide that alcohol to a minor there is still responsibility on their part," Montgomery said.

RELATED: Judge sentences teen who live streamed crash that killed sister to 6 years, 4 months in prison

We tried speaking with the owners of the store, but they declined to comment.

ABC says the store has been open since 2013 and did not have a previous violation.

State officials also tell Action News they will be monitoring the market to make sure alcohol is not sold during the suspension.

Below is the news release sent out by the California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control about the license being revoked:

The California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) today suspended the alcoholic beverage license of a Fresno market where alcohol was provided to an 18-year-old woman who was the driver in a single vehicle crash that took the life of her 14-year-old sister who was a passenger and caused serious injuries to her other passenger.

Effective immediately, the alcoholic beverage license for Lewis Market is suspended for 20 days, and the business located at 2301 East Lewis Avenue in Fresno is prohibited from selling or serving alcoholic beverages until the suspension period is over.

The suspension is the result of a Target Responsibility of Alcohol-Connected Emergencies (TRACE) investigation conducted by ABC. The TRACE investigation revealed that on July 21, 2017, 18-year-old Obdulia Sanchez was furnished beer by a female customer and with the knowledge of the store's employee.

Sanchez consumed the alcohol while driving with her 14-year-old sister and her sister's 15-year-old girlfriend. Sanchez was live streaming video before, during and after the crash. She was arrested after a blood test at a hospital near the crash revealed her blood alcohol content registered 0.106 about 90 minutes after the crash. Sanchez is currently serving a six-year sentence in state prison for gross vehicular manslaughter and other felony charges.

ABC Agents from the Stockton and Fresno District Offices conducted the TRACE investigation with the assistance of the California Highway Patrol.