SIKESTON -- Several charges in connection with a graduation party in Sikeston May 20 that involved underage drinking have been filed by Scott County Prosecuting Attorney Paul Boyd.
Mark A. Cheatham and Terry Brewer-Cheatham of 123 Greenbrier have been charged with 30 counts for supplying a minor with alcohol. Maximum punishment is a term not to exceed six months in the county jail or other institution and/or a fine of up to $500.
According to the probable cause affidavit written by Tim Bartlett of the Sikeston Department of Public Safety, he noticed about 30 to 40 vehicles parked near the Cheatham's house when he arrived at around 11:30 p.m. that night. After entering the backyard through an open gate, he observed about 50 subjects who appeared to be high school students, large quantities of alcoholic drinks and numerous minors drinking alcohol, holding alcohol containers or standing in close proximity to open containers.
Once Bartlett spoke, he wrote, the subjects began putting their containers down, pouring them out and moving around with some leaving the residence.
Bartlett said he asked if anyone was over 21 and all responded, "No." Some subjects were unsure of who was in charge of the party.
As Bartlett approached the rear of the residence, about 15-20 subjects entered the home and the Cheathams came out on the patio. Brewer-Cheatham then invited Bartlett into their home where he talked to them.
"Ms. Cheatham explained she felt like the kids were going to drink anyway and if they drank at her residence they would not be out driving around or sleeping in a field," the affidavit states. Brewer-Cheatham said she had not purchased any alcohol but thought the students brought a lot with them.
When Bartlett talked about the "Parents who host lose the most" program, Brewer-Cheatham said she had one of the signs in her garage.
Court dates for the Cheathams have not yet been set.
Minors who were issued citations included three from Sikeston, one from Scott City, four from Benton, three from Cairo, Ill., five from Jackson, two from Chaffee 10 from Cape Girardeau and one each from Oran and Burfordville.