An increased number of incidents involving substances commonly referred to as the “Date Rape Drug” have been
recently reported in the Yukon Territory. Despite being
labelled “Date Rape Drugs” , these substances are
often used to facilitate many harmful acts including: violent
physical assault, theft, humiliation, and sexual assault.
The most commonly encountered forms of these drugs include GHB (Gamma-hydroxybutryate),Special K (Ketamine Hydrochloride), and Rohypnol (casually referred to as Roofies). Odourless and tasteless, these drugs are almost always undetectable. Most often, a perpetrator will covertly slip a dose of the drug into an unsuspecting individual’s beverage. This only takes a split second. The drugs can impact a victim within 10-15 minutes of ingestion and have effects that last for hours. Victims experience a broad range of symptoms that leave them helpless and unable to make the proper judgements or employ the faculties required to defend themselves. Symptoms include slurred speech, weakness and staggering, dizziness, confusion, severe drowsiness, hallucinations, and loss of memory of events up to 24 hours. In some cases the victim can ingest a dosage potent enough to put them in a coma and can even cause death.
While the victim is left defenseless and uninhibited under the influence of the Date Rape Drug, a perpetrator will often lead their victim away to another more secluded location and sexually assault, physically assault, and/ or steal personal effects from the victim. The loss of memory associated with these drugs is particularly problematic as the victim may have no memory of the events that took place or who they were with while under the influence. As with any assault, the implications and long-term aftermath can be devastating. If an individual even remotely suspects that they have been drugged and/ or assaulted, they should seek help by calling a local support line or 911, or visit their local emergency room to be checked for signs of Date Rape Drugs and assault.
Leaving your drink unattended or unwatched for mere seconds can leave you vulnerable to being victimized. Make sure you are aware of defensive strategies you can use to help prevent you and your friends from becoming victims.