On any given Tuesday night, East End Oyster & Martini Bar is guaranteed to have a line out the door, with students seeking country music and 25-cent beer.
But Tuesday night, some students stayed outside the bar, handing out flyers that warned of the potential consequences associated with using fake IDs to gain admission to bars and advertising other locations for underage students.
“We want people to realize it’s beyond one night trying to get in a bar with friends,” said Kristi Schenk, a member of the campaign.
Schenk’s Psychology 566 class — “Attitude Change” — was given a project to create a campaign aimed at changing attitudes on an issue. Her group chose fake IDs.
“It’s not a secret that people have fake IDs here,” she said. “But it’s pretty obvious that people don’t know the consequences.”
Chapel Hill police issued 23 arrests in the past year for use or possession of a fraudulent ID. This does not include arrests made by the Alcohol Law Enforcement (ALE) or arrests for related crimes like possession.
“There are a couple different situations, but typically there’s a misdemeanor charge for fake IDs,” said Sgt. Josh Mecimore, spokesman for the Chapel Hill Police Department.
Both using a fake ID and a valid ID belonging to someone else usually results in a misdemeanor. But Mecimore said using a valid ID to pose as another person could result in a felony charge of identity theft, but is rare.
“Identity theft requires using someone else’s identity to make financial gain or avoiding prosecution,” he said.