The Reality of the Date Rape Drug

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Date rape is one of the fastest-growing sexual assault crimes in America
According to the U.S. Department of Justice, “Date Rape” is one of the fastest growing drug-facilitated, sexual assault crimes in America today. Two thirds of GHB is ingested by people aged 18-25 years old and Ecstasy abuse has increased 500 percent over a five-year period. Studies confirm that acquaintance rape occurs more commonly among college students — predominantly first year students — than among any other age group. A recent large study found one in four college women reported being the victim of rape or attempted rape and 84% of their assailants were boyfriends or acquaintances. Most victims remember nothing of the incident except the feeling of being violated. The same study found that one in four college men admitted to having used sexual aggression with women, and one in twelve to committing a sexual assault of some kind. These men will slip the drug into a woman’s drink without their knowledge, most often in combination with beer, and wait for the drug to incapacitate the woman before sexually assaulting her. The assailants go to parties to look for easy targets and opportunities. They wait until the victim is too out of it to say “no” and then have sex with her. Many men do it just to take advantage of women sexually. The drug is often added to punch or other open container drinks at fraternity parties, college functions and social gatherings, where it is reportedly given to female party goers in hopes of lowering their inhibitions and facilitating a potential sexual conquest for the assailant. High risk situations are clubs, parties, bars, and raves. Women contacting us are of all backgrounds and ages. Many are still in some shock over being pregnant and are not sure of the race of the man that raped them and have little to share about the “father” of their child.

The date rape drugs are often referred to as the “alphabet drugs” called “E” or Ecstasy, “G” which can be either GHB or GBL and “K” or “Special K” which is Ketamine. For a while Rohypnol or “Roofies” was one of the most popular date rape drugs, but it has been replaced by GHB as the date rape drug of choice. The most popular date-rape drugs are (GHB) gamma hydroxybutyrate and ketamine. The “date rape” drug or “sexual assault” drug is the street name for Rohypnol because it has been associated with date rape. GHB is produced in clear liquid, white powder, tablet, and capsule forms. It has also been commonly known as: Rophies, Roofies, Roachies, Forget Pill, R2, roofenol, Roche, circles, La rocha, Rope, Trip-and-Fall, Liquid X, Liquid E, G-Juice, Rib, Mexican Valium, Roach-2, Roopies, Ropies, Mind-Erasers, Liquid Ecstasy, Somatomax, Scoop, or Grievous Bodily Harm. Ketamine is also known as “K”, “Special K” or “Vitamin K”. It commonly comes in a liquid form, but is also found in powder or pill forms.

Rohypnol is not legal in the US, nor is it manufactured or sold legally in the United States. It is used as a short-term treatment for insomnia in other countries. It is produced and sold legally by prescription in Europe and Latin America, then smuggled into the United States by mail or travelers. The drug is often distributed on the street in its original “bubble packaging” which creates a false appearance of legitimacy and makes it appear to be harmless and legal. Rohypnol tablets are white, scored on one side, with the word “ROCHE” and an encircled one or two indicating the dosage on the other. Rohypnol is a low-cost drug, often less than $5.00 per tablet. The tablets are sold in a sealed bubble pack of one or two mg doses.

Rohypnol can be dissolved in a beverage, and is often undetectable.
Ecstasy is also known as MDMA and is known on the street as Adam, XTC, E, M, Bean, and Roll. Ecstasy comes in a tablet that is often branded; a few samples are shown below:
Examples of date rape drug Ecstasy
In combination with alcohol, it can induce a blackout with memory loss and a decrease in resistance. Women as young as 13 throughout the country have reported being raped after being involuntarily sedated with Rohypnol. Roughly ten minutes after having the drug in her system, the victim may feel dizzy and disoriented, too hot or too cold or both; some become nauseated. Sedation starts approximately 25-30 minutes after the drug is ingested and crests within two hours, with effects continuing for up to eight hours.

The drug has no taste or odor. Victims don’t have any memories of what happened while under the drug’s influence. The woman can appear extremely intoxicated, with slurred speech or experience difficulty speaking, gastrointestinal disturbances, poor urinary retention, poor coordination, swaying, blood-shot eyes, decreased blood pressure, and then she passes out . . . but without the odor of alcohol.

Date rape drugs can leave victims without any memories of what happenedVicky was 19 when she discovered she was pregnant –- she had no physical signals of rape. She woke up in her own bed and therefore had no reason to be concerned. She assumes that she had too much to drink, although she doesn’t remember the previous night’s events; she thought a friend must have helped get her safely home. She was shocked to discover 2 months later that she was pregnant. “I hadn’t had sex for over a year and bought three pregnancy tests before going to a clinic for a blood test.” Vicky chose to keep and raise her child with the help of her family. In her words, “Having the baby brought peace and healing to my life.”

Alcohol and Rohypnol are very hazardous in combination. If a woman is drinking alcohol when the drug is slipped in her drink, the drug may greatly impair her memory and judgment. A woman who becomes intoxicated on a combination of alcohol and Rohypnol may experience “blackouts” lasting 8-24 hours following ingestion, making her unable to resist a sexual attack. If combined with other drugs, the results may lead to respiratory depression, aspiration, coma and even death. Possession of Rohypnol is punishable for up to three years in prison and a fine. Distribution and administration of this rape drug without the person’s knowledge is punishable by twenty years in prison and a fine.

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