Police commissioner cited for hosting underage partiers

A Trumbull police commissioner may have wound up on the wrong side of the law Friday.

Christian Trefz, 54, who has been a member of the Police Commission since November, was cited for violating the state’s social hosting law after police responding to a complaint of a loud party allegedly found a dozen underage drinkers at Trefz’s Driftwood Lane home.

According to reports, police received a complaint of a loud party in the Canoe Brook Lake area. The anonymous tipster also said there were numerous youths partying at a beach area on the lake.

A police officer investigated, and drove through the area until he found the party. The officer said there were numerous cars parked at the house, and sounds of a party coming from the back.

When the officer went to the back he reported seeing 10-20 partiers that appeared to be in their teens playing “beer pong” and said there were beer bottles and cans strewn about. After announcing his presence and approaching the partiers, the officer determined that 12 of them were under age 21, police said.

Trefz, who was home at the time, told police the party was for his daughter’s college graduation. Under the state’s social hosting law anyone in control of a property is responsible for any underage drinking that occurs there, and a violation is a Class A misdemeanor. Trefz was issued a summons for violating State Statute 30-89(a), permitting a minor to possess alcohol in a private dwelling. His court date is June 5.

Melissa McGarry, a spokesman for the group Trumbull Partnership Against Underage Drinking & Drugs (tpaud.org) said her group works closely with the Trumbull police and Chief Michael Lombardo and provides funds for additional patrols during times when youths are likely to be gathering and drinking. If Trefz is found to have violated the social hosting law, she said she expected he would face the same consequences as anyone else.

“This is something we and the Trumbull police take very seriously, and TPAUD has spent a lot of time and money educating officers and students that these laws exist for a reason, and they apply to everyone,” she said. “Ultimately this is about the health and safety of young people.”