Caledonia man charges dismissed in drinking case

By The Associated Press

COLUMBUS — A justice court judge has dismissed all charges against a Caledonia man charged with hosting an after-prom party at his home where alcohol was served to minors.

Justice Court Judge Dorothy Stewart The judge took the action following a hearing Tuesday for Steve Wallace.

Authorities said the party took place at Wallace’s home in Caledonia.

Wallace was charged with sale of beer without a permit, possession of alcoholic beverages with the intent to sell without a permit, and 11 counts of violating the Social Host Law.

Steve Wallace testified that while he knew of the party, he did not know there would be alcohol. Wallace denied any wrongdoing.

The charges stemmed from an April 1 incident where Wallace’s son, Steven Colton “Colt” Wallace, 18, threw an after-prom party where alcohol was sold and served to minors. Colt Wallace was a high school senior at Caledonia High School at the time of the incident.

Colt Wallace pleaded guilty Tuesday to one count selling alcohol without a permit, one count possession of beer with intent to sell without a permit and one count possession of liquor with intent to sell without a permit.

Stewart sentenced Colt Wallace to two months’ probation and fined him $1,410.

Mississippi’s “social host” law — passed in 2011 — punishes adults who knowingly host gatherings where people younger than 21 consume alcohol. It carries penalties of up to 90 days in jail and a $1,000 fine for the adult.

In the past, it had been illegal for adults to purchase alcohol for minors, or to provide it to them. There was no punishment for people who hosted events and didn’t provide alcohol but knew minors were drinking.