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Police: Teen nearly dies from alcohol; parents hope talking with teens helps

Underage Drinking

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - It's a conversation that will hopefully come up before the worst happens. Police say a Longmont 16-year-old girl nearly died from drinking after her friends left her alone with a blood alcohol level that could have killed her.

21 may be the legal drinking age, but many teenagers give it a try before that big birthday.

"There's a lot of peer pressure. Like seniors, if you're in a sport and you make friends with a senior, they're gonna take you to parties and they're gonna make you do stuff," said 16-year-old Daniel Hernandez.

With spring in full swing, police expect more underage drinking calls.

"You'll get to the parties and stuff. Occasionally, we'll go to the keggers. It's that time of year," said Colorado Springs Police Department Sgt. Mike Roy.

It's also time for the high school dance of the year: prom.

A 16-year-old in Longmont was rushed to the hospital after paramedics found her unresponsive in the back of a limousine. Police say the teenager's blood alcohol content was point four and that she's lucky to be alive. Officers say she told them the alcohol was in the limo when she got in.

"You need to think first and foremost about your friend, not whether or not you're going to get in trouble. That's usually the case when people start making foolish decisions," said Sgt. Roy.

"I would take them to a hospital, just put them in my car, take them there," said Hernandez.

One parent says he'd rather have his kids safe then for teenagers to be afraid of the consequences.

"My kids are told to call me if they have problems, and that I will still love them and they know that I will be there for them, but I will help them with their problems," said Ben Kates.

Police have one clear-cut recommendation for parents.

"A parent should try to know where their kids are at all times. Obviously, set some ground rules like if I call you, you respond-type situation," said Sgt. Roy.

Kates agreed saying, "Have an awareness of where they are at all times because one bad decision can really ruin things forever for that person, that parent and that family," said Kates.

"I just have the right state of mind. I just know what to do in a situation like that. Don't drink and don't do drugs," said Hernandez.

Longmont Police say the person who provided the alcohol to the 16-year-old girl could face charges.

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