Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Evans Smith had his first appearance before the Maui County Liquor Control Adjudication Board on April 3, and during that meeting he made a small error that made me smile. All Smith did was say a name, a simple name, during a public hearing.
I’m not sure of the spelling—I didn’t ask Smith for confirmation, but he wouldn’t have told me anyway—and there’s no listing in the phone book. That last part isn’t surprising, because Heard was a “minor decoy”—a guy aged between 18 and 21 that the LC used in 2007 to attempt to buy drinks from various establishments.
In the early days of this column, deputy prosecuting attorneys always named the minor decoys that successfully purchased alcohol from licensees during public Adjudication Board hearings. Then, after this column began publishing the names of the decoys, the deputy prosecuting attorneys suddenly clammed up and stopped giving out the names.
Smith, who is new to prosecuting liquor violation cases, wasn’t really up on that rule at the April 3 hearing, and blabbed Heard’s name with reckless abandon. It got so bad that at one point Chief LC Investigator Bill Pacheco leaned over and whispered something to Smith, who then started referring to Heard as “the minor decoy.” Well, he did that for the most part, but every now and then would forget and mention Heard’s name again.
Anyway, the upcoming May 1, 2008 Adjudication Board hearing will present Smith with plenty of time to practice what to say and not say: the agenda lists five minor decoy cases. My guess is Smith will have gotten LC procedures down and will be just as discreet as they want, but in case he isn’t, we’ll be there listening very carefully with notepad open to make sure.