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Sexual Assault and Family Emergencies (SAFE)

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About Date Rape Drugs


Important Date Rape Drug Information

Knowledge is power, and that's why SAFE provides fast facts about date rape drugs. The term "date rape" itself is misleading, as the offender may not be a date, but rather an acquaintance or a stranger. "Drug assisted sexual assault" is a more accurate term. Please review the following date rape drug information.


Common Date Rape Drugs

Rohypnol
This drug is not legal in the US; legal in Europe and Mexico for sleep problems and anesthesia; brought into the US illegally.

Numerous street names - Rophies, Roofies, Mind Erasers, Forget Pill, Roach, Trip-and-Fall, Mexican Valium, Circles.

A small pill that dissolves in liquid; may be ground into a powder; new pills make clear liquids turn bright blue and dark drinks turn cloudy but many old pills are on the market; no taste changes to drinks.

Effects felt within 30 minutes - can last for several hours. Can leave the body as early as 12 hours as late as 72 hours.

Effects: loss of muscle control; difficulty with movement; amnesia; blackout; confusion; problems seeing; dizziness; sleepiness; lower blood pressure; stomach problems; death.

Two US drugs are starting to be used for the same purposes - Clonazepam (marketed as Klonopin) and Alprazolam (marketed as Xanax).


GHB (Gamma-Hydroxybutyric Acid)
This drug was recently made legal in the US to treat problems from narcolepsy (sleep disorder); distribution is tightly restricted.

Street names - Bedtime Scoop, Easy Lay, Grievous Bodily Harm, Liquid X, Salt Water, G.

More than one form - clear liquid with no odor, white powder or pill; might give the drink a slightly salty taste but mixing with a sweet drink masks the taste.

Effects felt within 15 minutes and can last 3-4 hours; very potent - a small amount can have a big effect. Leaves the body in 12 hours.

Effects: relaxation; drowsiness, dizziness, nausea; blackout; seizures; amnesia; problems breathing; tremors; sweating; vomiting; slow heart rate; dream-like feeling; coma; death.


Ketamine
This drug is legal in the US; mostly used on animals as an anesthetic; vet clinics are robbed for their ketamine supply.

Street names - Cat Valium, Black Hole, Special K, Super Acid, Jet.

Comes as a liquid and a white powder. Very fast acting - victim might be aware of what's happening but unable to move.

Effects: distorted perceptions of sight and sound; lost sense of time and identity; out of body experience; dream-like feeling; feeling out of control; impaired motor function; problems breathing; convulsions; vomiting; numbness; loss of coordination; aggressive or violent behavior; depression; high blood pressure; slurred speech.


Additional Information

Ecstasy has also been used as a date rape drug. Can be slipped into a drink without knowing it's there; can make a person feel very "lovey-dovey"; lowers the ability to give reasoned consent. Alcohol is the drug most commonly used to commit sexual assault. The US Congress passed the Drug-Induced Rape Prevention and Punishment Act in 1996. Use of a drug to commit sexual assault is a federal offense punishable by up to 20 years in prison.