Legendary vendor Wally "The Beer Man" McNeil was found not guilty today of selling alcohol to a minor at the Twins' final home game of the 2010 regular season back on September 30. The verdict came down in Hennepin County court this morning.â†µ
McNeil and his co-defendant, Edward Stepnick, claimed that a couple of teenage decoys were used by the Hennepin County Police Department as part of a "sting" operation at Target Field during the Twins' final series of the regular season against the Toronto Blue Jays.
McNeil said that he was surrounded by several fans and was checking IDs when he asked if everyone in the group was 21 or older. The police informant in that crowd, Anthony Pasquale, is 19 years of age, but did not state that he was below the legal age for consumption. Lt. Chris Hildreth of the Hennepin County Police Department said that while the informants can lie about whether or not they're working for the police department, they are required to tell the truth if they are asked about their age when it comes to the purchasing of alcohol. That was the big bone of contention in this matter.â†µ
Stepnick, on the other hand, was found guilty and will have to pay a $378 fine. His incident was separate from McNeil's, and involved checking the Wisconsin driver's license of another individual.â†µ
Wally The Beer Man has been with the Twins' organization since the Metrodome opened in 1982, and is one of the most famous stadium vendors in America. Good to know that there shouldn't be any obstacles to him coming back to Target Field next season.â†µ