When a half-dozen men and a woman in street clothes closed in on University of Virginia student Elizabeth Daly, 20, she and two roommates panicked.
That led to Daly spending a night and an afternoon in the Albemarle-Charlottesville Regional Jail. Her initial offense? Walking to her car with bottled water, cookie dough and ice cream just purchased from the Harris Teeter in the Barracks Road Shopping Center for a sorority benefit fundraiser.
A group of state Alcoholic Beverage Control agents clad in plainclothes approached her, suspecting the blue carton of LaCroix sparkling water to be a 12-pack of beer. Police say one of the agents jumped on the hood of her car. She says one drew a gun. Unsure of who they were, Daly tried to flee the darkened parking lot.
Fortunately, no one was shot or killed, but how long will that luck hold out with such massive incompetence at play? I get that underage alcohol purchase is illegal, but does that justify jumping on the hood of a car and pulling a gun? Of course the girls ran. That's what they should do in such a situation! Perhaps the VA ABC agents should stick to rediscovering the inoperable stills they previously destroyed.
See "Bottled-water purchase leads to night in jail for UVa student" for more on this incident. Astonishingly, the VA ABC office is turning to Facebook in a feeble attempt to explain away their strong-arm tactics.
Update July 15: The ABC has pulled their post, and subsequent public comments from their Facebook page. Apparently the heat in that thread was too much for them. There are other threads, so far, on the VA ABC Facebook page.