Deborah Gibney, 46, who was arrested and charged with violating San Diego County’s Social Host Ordinance (SECF 32.1503) as a result of an incident at her Fallbrook home on June 10, 2009, pled guilty to the misdemeanor charge on Feb. 9.
Lt. Phil Brust, commander of the Fallbrook Sheriff’s Substation said he was “very pleased” with the outcome of Gibney’s case. Brust credited detective Jim Pucillo and deputy district attorney Robert Eacret for bringing the case to a successful outcome.
“[Gibney] has admitted that she did violate the social host ordinance by allowing children to bring alcohol to her house,” said Brust. “Pucillo’s and Eacret’s investigation, coupled with the excellent witness statements from those who were present at the party, in my opinion, led to her guilty plea.”
Brust said law enforcement never alleged that Gibney served the minors alcohol, but that she “allowed them to bring alcohol to her home and consume it on the premises to the point that several of the kids became severely intoxicated and one needed to be taken to the hospital.”
Law enforcement officers responded to a call on June 10, 2009 from Fallbrook Hospital regarding a 17-year-old girl who had been brought into the emergency room with what appeared to be alcohol poisoning. When deputies proceeded to investigate the circumstances involved in the girl’s situation, they discovered a large party was taking place at Gibney’s home. After arriving at Gibney’s home, officers discovered between 75 and 100 teenagers or minors on her property.
“Alcohol was openly being consumed,” said Brust, adding that 10 to 15 of the teens were “so intoxicated, they became sick to the point of vomiting.”
Brust said following Gibney’s arrest she served one day in jail and was credited for that in the plea agreement.
“She has now been placed on three years probation, is required to attend a MADD Victim Impact Panel, ordered to attend parenting classes, and has been fined $300,” he explained. Brust said the fact that Gibney pled guilty is encouraging.
“We are pleased that she recognized that she exercised poor judgment in allowing kids to bring alcohol to her home; by pleading guilty, she is in fact taking responsibility for her actions,” he said.
Eacret agreed. “We think this was a fair outcome for this case,” he said. “She admitted she was guilty of this offense.”
Eacret said if Gibney meets all the requirements set forth, and does not violate her probation, the district attorney’s office will be satisfied.
With Spring Break just around the corner, Brust said he hopes adults will act with responsibility concerning children under their supervision.
“Hopefully this will hit home to any adults that may be thinking about hosting a party during Spring Break or for graduation,” said Brust. “It shows that we in law enforcement and the DA’s office are serious about protecting youth.
The successful outcome of this case shows that.”