Disturbing Story of Folks Possibly Getting Roofied


Photo by PoPville flickr user rpmaxwell

“Dear PoP,

About three weeks ago, my friend was at a party at the French Embassy, a “techno” party or something, with a few people he was acquaintances with but didn’t know very well. He went outside to smoke a cigarette, came back in, was dancing around/enjoying himself and doesn’t remember much past that. The girls he was with took him home because he was “too drunk,” even though he had only had one or two, and he didn’t wake up until about 3pm the next day. He was in a lot of pain, so went to the hospital… turns out he broke his collar bone. Remembers nothing.

Fast forward to last night, my coworker/friend is at a bar near where we work, in Judiciary Square, having a few glasses of wine with friends. He got up to go to the bathroom, and doesn’t remember anything past that point. He was dead weight on the floor, and it took four people to lift him up and get him out of the bar. He woke up this morning, his face all smashed up and needing stitches. All he knows is that a kickball girl bought him a drink.

Really curious if there are other reports out there!”

I got some cryptic notes a few months ago that this may have happened to a couple of other people. This is terrifying. Has anyone else heard about anything like this?

Watch your drinks and be sure to watch your friends’ backs.

65 Comment

  • they should call them “floories.”

  • This is a very Disturbing day already.

  • bfinpetworth

    I know two folks who had similar experiences. It seems like some folks just like to mess with people rather than the assumed desire to take advantage of the person. Wierd.

  • Hope your friend’s ok, I had this happen to me at a club in DC and it’s not fun. I’ve heard other people say they’ve experienced the same thing recently. Best advice I got (after the fact) was from my grandfather. When in a crowded bar or club:

    Always keep your glass in your hand or keep your hand over the top of your glass.

    If someone buys you a drink have the bartender hand it directly to you.

    If you leave your drink on the bar/table/etc. and walk away to dance/chat/go to the bathroom/etc. don’t come back and finish the drink. If you’ve left it alone it’s basically done.

    I’ve followed these tips and luckily haven’t had another problem.

    • “Kickball girl bought him a drink”

      I know that the available girl to guy ratio in this town can sometimes be tough on the ladies, but are young women resorting to drugging dudes to get a guy home?

      THE STORY YOU CAN’T AFFORD TO MISS.

      • Women in DC are pretty desperate. That’s why they can’t seem to stay out of gay bars.

    • I follow these tips too. If the drink ends up out of my sight it is no longer drinkable.

      It IS possible to black out after two drinks though. My tolerance varies wildly from night to night and sometimes it only takes one glass of wine or one beer to nearly get me there.

  • kiki

    A friend of mine thought something similar happened to her when we were in college. When we walked her back through what she could remember of the night, we realized that she was on a new prescription for her allergies that she had taken about an hour before had her one and only drink and then passed out. Call the pharmacy and yup, that was the culprit. Not saying these men weren’t drugged, but just offering up some other possibilities. Especially since it’s allergy season.

    • +1, the same thing happened to me in college. allergy medication and drinking can go haywire.

  • so, wait, this happened to the same person? could be a serious health problem too. I’d def go see a doctor no matter what because that stuff messes anyone up and I’ve heard that it is especially hard on guys (could be urban legend).

    I think we can all agree the BYOB is best policy here.

  • It could be escopolamina or “burundanga,” as it’s known in Colombia. I’ve long wondered why it hasn’t made it’s way to the States. Maybe it has now….

  • They were almost certainly not drugged by someone slippping something into his or her drink. A UK study found that almost all supposed “drugging” reports are the result of alcohol alone or the interaction of alcohol with OTC drugs (Pseudoephedrine and alcohol can cause blackouts in some people after 1-2 drinks)

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/6152646.stm
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2007/apr/03/ukcrime.drugsandalcohol

  • I don’t think it is burundanga in this case Caballero, because it does not make you pass out, or look drunk, it supresses your will and you do whatever you are told. you don’t remember anything after that, or could kill you.

    • That depends on the dosage. Ideally, it has the effects you mention, but I know people who have had different experiences.

      • You seem extremely knowledgeable about the drug, origin, dosages, and their ideal effects.

        Can you account for your whereabouts on the night(s) in question?

        • I spent a lot of time in Colombia trying not to get drugged, mugged, or kidnapped. Fortunately, I didn’t get drugged or kidnapped.

  • My parents, right after the “Don’t drink you’re underaged” talk, immediatly followed it up with the “Never, Ever leave your drink alone, even if you have to take it into the bathroom with you.” conversation. i’ve thrown away drinks rather than left them and come back, i’ve heard enough horror stories, and of course was forced to read “Go Ask Alice” in Jr. High” when she goes crazy after somebody slips acid into her drink. So, be careful out there, there are a lot of jerks.

  • I know two girls that just got drugged at U St Music Hall this past Friday night… Fortunately, they got home safely and recovered easily. After checking out the symptoms online, they believe its GHB, not rohypnol…

    • Just my two cents, but I doubt folks would risk the chances of sending someone to the hospital or morgue by spiking a drink with GHB.

  • This happened to me a few years ago at the bar that is now the green turtle at the verizon center. Took a study break while in grad school, went with a friend to grab a glass of wine, and woke up with no recollection of the rest of the evening (with no intention of getting drunk) and in extreme physical pain… I was told later the bartender/bar had a bad reputation anyway for sketchy stuff and they shut down shortly after that. MPD said it was too late to get a test for illegal substances by the time i woke up the next day (bad stuff passes through your system extremely fast)

    Knew two guys in high school that were experimental with drugs and decided Roofies was a good one to try. One had a seizure, became comatose and has never been the same. Those drugs can have a very violent affect on you – definitely not worth risking the “free drink”.

  • This is definitely one of those paranoia things for me. I’ve always been very cautious about allowing a stranger to buy me a drink when I’m out. I don’t accept anything that hasn’t been handed to me by the bartender and I never leave my drink unattended. Even if the account above could be attributed to an errant drug interaction, Kat’s advice should be followed under any circumstance.

  • This is why you should orders bottled beer in a crowded place. tougher to slip something in, easier to hold, and acts as a protection device if anyone tries anything.

  • Was one of his kidneys missing?

  • My little sister and her roommate got roofied by a bartender in Baltimore. They went up to the bar to order their first drinks of the night, and 10 minutes later they both completely blacked out. Luckily, they had other friends there who helped bring them home and took care of them when they were vomiting. The next morning, they woke up completely fresh, with no hangover, and their friends told them what happened. It’s scary that this can happen to you even if you follow common sense rules, but it also shows the extra benefits of surrounding yourself with real friends.

    • why would a bartender do something like that? It’s not like once the girls pass out on the floor he can get from behind the bar, drag them somewhere in the bar, rape them, and get back to work. What’s the fun in doing something like that to other people?

    • That sounds like an awesome night out – low bar tab, no hangover. Sign me up.

  • Same thing happened to my friend at Local 16. Woke up with a broken foot! Our other friend ended up on a park bench across town. Scarey stuff.

  • Same thing happened to me in Vegas. I woke up with a new showgirl wife, a burro named Steve, and a time-share 1BR just off the Strip. Anyone want a showgirl?

    • What, you’re keeping Steve? Burros can’t cook, you know.

      • I’ve come to like Steve very much in the days since I somehow acquired him. No: not like. Love. I love Steve. I don’t care if he can’t cook. I don’t care if he watches Fox News all the time. I love him, damn it! Love him! You can’t take him from me!

        The showgirl, on the other hand…let’s just say there’s a reason why they make those stages so faraway and so brightly lit. Yuck.

    • Does she look like Gina Gershon?

  • Ok, I’m sorry, but do people really leave their drinks unattended and then return to finish them off? Even before I was in college I knew that leaving a drink alone was BIG. NO-NO. Maybe men aren’t as aware of this little factoid.

  • A friend had the something similar happen. She had a beer, passed out, stopped breathing and spent 2 days in the hospital with a ventilator.

    In addition to not leaving your drink – safety in numbers is always a good idea.

    Rant: People that do this crap
    Rave: To the friends that step in and help out

  • Collar bones, faces, feet…how do people go from passing out to breaking bones? Are they getting injured while falling over, or are they getting beaten up while passed out?

    • It’s because you drop directly to the ground without any way of breaking your fall, since you are passed out. So your face, collarbone, foot, etc take the full brunt of the impact.

  • As a guy, I’ve been roofied before. About 6 years ago, someone roofied my drink while I was sitting right there! I was talking to a friend of mine and didn’t keep my eye on the drink the entire time. Big mistake! I left the bar, got hit by a car and was in shock trauma for a week with a lacerated liver, broken jaw and shattered eye socket.

  • Happened to my friend, where he blacked and woke up being kicked by a police officer where he’d fallen asleep on the sidewalk, and he was covered in blood. Not his own.

    Not here though, so whatever that was, you all are safe. :) Just thought I’d share.

  • Wow that is really terrible to hear. I cannot imagine waking up half way through the day with no knowledge of the previous night and with a severe injury. That freaks me out just thinking about it.

  • Insensitive comment of the day:

    “Damn, I though that drink belonged to a chick.. what kind of a guy has apple-tinis? And that was my last roofie pill for crying out loud!!”

  • dude from second story here.

    don’t have the toxicology results yet, but the doc said I either had a seizure (which is extremely unlikely as there’s no history of epilepsy on either side of my family and I’ve never had one before), or it was a benzo or other form of hypnotic. the problem is that the half life of many of them is so short, that unless you’re tested within a few hours, they can be impossible to detect after the fact.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_benzodiazepines#Benzodiazepine_half_life_and_equivalent_dose_table

    No chance it was scopolamine. I spent time in Colombia so I’m familiar with it and it induces retroactive amnesia, meaning you don’t remember even getting dosed. Also, I was found unconscious, and based on my injuries, did not even attempt to catch myself or break my fall so I just straight up lost consciousness.

    Stay safe, kids….

  • I’m the guy from the orginal post. The party was organized by the French Embassy but took place at the national postal museum, near Union Station. I was not cautious/at all worried about something like this happening to me, as a guy it never even crossed my mind, and I assume I drank from the wrong cup. Worth being aware that it does in fact happen. I only know from the accounts of the people I was with (who were unable to support my weight) that I fell twice and complained about pain after the second fall. The night goes from completely fine/clear to completely out of it/gone in a time-span of about 20 minutes. I woke up thinking I was still at the party, confused, like I’d just blinked, when in fact I’d been asleep for nearly 15 hours, and discovered my injury for the first time upon waking up. It was very frightening and I do not wish this experience upon anyone. It’s a psychotic thing to do to someone. ER staff and police not helpful at all. They didn’t believe me.

  • my experience almost exactly. i closed my tab, talked to the bartender, said a goodnight or two. i remember absolutely everything up until going in to the bathroom. next thing i know, it’s the AM.

    apparently i had to be carried into the cab, and then out of the cab and up the stairs. with less than two people carrying me i would just fall. complete dead weight. scary shit.

  • Rant: I count 9 different comments above that dismiss these stories using “should’ve known better” or “probably wasn’t drugs” arguments.

    I’m all for personal responsibility, but blaming the victim or dismissing their allegations is deeply insensitive, both in these specific cases and in general — regardless of gender and regardless of whether the crime actually led to further violent/sex crimes. The “should’ve known better” angle is particularly dangerous… it’s just a step away from “he/she was asking for it” — a logic that has been used to justify appalling sexual violence for a very long time.

    I suggest we look out for our friends, look out for ourselves, but point our fingers at the creeps who perpetrate these crimes, not at their unfortunate victims.

  • to be fair, it is true that a lot of people confuse getting shit faced and blacking out with being roofied. having experienced both, the two are VERY different.

    the loss of motor control, for one. also the lack of sense of time. it really is like one second your there, the next second it’s the AM. closest i can compare it to is being anesthetized.

    • +1…I had this happen to me at a bar in Adams Morgan two years ago (bar name will remain anonymous, but suffice to say it was not one that I would have expected something like what happened to happen…it was also a wednesday night). Was having beers with friends, had 2 and then completely went black. Came to at 4am in an alley off of Georgia Ave. b/c somebody living around there noticed me basically “dumped” back there. Learned later that one of the guys with me also completely went black (a big guy who can handle his booze and also only had a few) and heard from people who encountered me in the night that my behavior was definitely not that of a drunk person and something else was off. Went to the hospital and went through the whole 9 yards to make sure that I wasn’t assaulted in any way worse than being robbed and dumped but it was a horrifying experience all the same. I’m hyper vigilant about my drinks and company anytime I’m out now.

  • it’s a simple matter of physics. when your body goes completely limp because you’ve been drugged, you’re likely to fall and break something. your body is actually pretty heavy and gravity’s kind of a bitch. imagine just falling straight into the hard ground without bracing yourself or being able to roll up or anything. sounds like a broken collar bone to me…

  • Sounds like most of the people above who told their stories had friends who made sure they got home safely. But, if anyone ever needs it the DC Rape Crisis center has some information about what to do if you think you may have been assaulted after being drugged:
    If you think you might have been drugged and you have questions you can call the DC Rape Crisis Center for information or support at 202.333.RAPE. For a toll-free rape crisis hotline, call (800) 656-HOPE.

    If you are not in a safe place, try to contact a trusted person, the police, or 911 for help in getting to a hospital.

    If you think that you might want to report the assault to the police, first call the police, then go to the hospital.
    Once you get to the hospital:
    Request a urine test as quickly as possible to detect the presence of sedating substances – every hour matters.
    If the urine tests results are to be used in court it is important that the urine sample be obtained at a hospital or through law enforcement.
    For More Information on Date Rape Drugs visit http://www.4woman.gov/faq/rohypnol.htm or call the National Women’s Health Center at 1.800.994.9662

  • The Hangover 2 is already out?

  • My Friend and I just got roofied Saturday. I remember sitting at the Jukebox with my friend while are drinks where on the table behind us… and After that we don’t remember anything for about 3 hours. I some how spent or lost 400 dollars while my other drink lost 150 dollars. My debit card was gone, and I don’t remember having anymore to drink after that.

    This experience has kept me up every night since… I have panic attacks thinking about it.

    • no one saw anything? has your debit card been used? did you have 400 dollars in cash on you at a bar?
      did you wake up in the bar?

  • This happened Sunday night, may 28, 2011. My girlfriend got spiked.

    She only had 3 drinks and was acting crazy and her pupils were dilated so we left the club. We stopped for food because I thought it would make her feel better.

    I went to the bathroom and she wandered off. I found her 5 minutes later face up in someone’s flower bed, unconscious. I carried her back to the hotel, she could barely stand.

    She went to the ER the next day to get checked out because she didn’t feel right and the ER did a toxicology screening on her and found it.

    The hospital reported it to the Kent county sheriffs office as well as the DC police. They also did a rape kit.

    In our hotel there were 5 women unconscious in the hallways that night, all with wrist bands from U Street dance hall. The clerk called emergency services, they were taken to the ER and police were back at hotel by 4AM investigating.

    We later found out they arrested a male bartender at U Street.

    DO NOT buy drinks in DC clubs. It’s suicide. Bring your own stuff and do your drinking in the hotel room.

    If you think you’ve been spiked make sure you go to a hospital and get tested. People that do this need to go to prison for a very long time.

  • club was u-street dance hall, drug the er found was rohypnol

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