Mar 5, 2020

ABC Launches New Law Enforcement WebApp for the TRACE Program

The new app will help first responders handle critical incidents involving minors more efficiently

Sacramento – On March 5, 2020, the California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) launched a new TRACE WebApp that will help law enforcement agencies statewide handle critical incidents involving minors and alcohol more efficiently through ABC’s Target Responsibility for Alcohol Connected Emergencies (TRACE) program.

The new app was developed by students at Sacramento State University in partnership with ABC. “The talent these students brought to this effort increases more timely notifications and improves the opportunities for successful investigations,” said ABC TRACE Supervising Agent in Charge Brandon Shotwell. “They developed an app that is easy to use and will help ABC agents when they respond to alcohol-related emergencies involving California youth.”

The app provides a simple list of questions for responding law enforcement officers to answer from the scene of an incident. They can easily access the app through their phones or tablets in the field.

The TRACE Protocol was created in 2004 when a diverse group of law enforcement agencies, including ABC, stakeholder groups and individuals tried to grapple with the problem of youth access to alcohol.

Casey Goodwin, a college student from Exeter, was killed in a head-on collision by an 18-year-old drunk driver in 2003. Her mother, Lynne, was concerned the investigation involving her daughter’s death did not include all parties responsible for the events that led up to the crash. Although the police had done an excellent job investigating the crash, she felt that someone who either sold or gave the alcoholic beverages to the drunk driver should be held accountable as well. Lynne asked why there wasn’t a better method of investigating that aspect of impaired driving crashes involving minors.

The questions Lynne Goodwin asked eventually brought together ABC with the Attorney General’s Office, California Highway Patrol, MADD, the California Friday Night Live (FNL) Partnership, the California Office of Traffic Safety (OTS) and many other agencies and stakeholder groups. Soon after those meetings, ABC created the TRACE Unit with funding from OTS.

The TRACE program continues today because of a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety (OTS) through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). The grant provides funding for in-depth ABC investigations of serious incidents, including car crashes, but also alcohol overdoses, poisonings, and assaults involving minors and alcohol consumption. Visit TRACE to learn more.

ABC’s mission is to provide the highest level of service and public safety to the people of the state through licensing, education, and enforcement. ABC protects communities through education and by administering prevention and enforcement programs designed to increase compliance with California’s alcoholic beverage laws. 

ABC is a department of the Business, Consumer Services and Housing Agency.


Additional information may be obtained by contacting:

Public Information Office
3927 Lennane Drive, Suite 100
Sacramento, CA 95834
Phone: (916) 419-2525

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