On Rohypnol

Oh dear, another myth destrouyed by actual statistics:

Nick Ross, chair of the Jill Dando Institute of Crime Science, commented: \”There is no evidence of widespread use of hypnotics in sexual assault, let alone Rohypnol, despite many attempts to prove the contrary.

\”During thousands of blood and alcohol tests lots of judgement-impairing compounds were discovered, but they were mostly street drugs or prescription pharmaceuticals taken by the victims themselves, and above all alcohol was the common theme.

\”As Dr Burgess observes, it is not scientific evidence which keeps the drug rape myth alive but the fact that it serves so many useful functions.\”

Note that the statement is not that it never happens, the spiking of a drink with Rohypnol or another drug. Only that it seems to be rare, vastly rarer than many would seem to believe.

\”The reason why fear of drink-spiking has become widespread seems to be a mix of it being more convenient to guard against than the effects of alcohol itself and the fact that such stories are exotic – like a more adult version of \’stranger danger\’.\”

7 comments on “On Rohypnol

  1. Well if you have a better explanation for how a you woman in a club starts feeling giddy and disoriented after 5 or 6 drinks and becomes willing to sleep with men she would not otherwise have done so…….

  2. “Or perhaps its a convenient excuse for the self inflicted wounds of getting so pissed that they have no idea whats going on and regret what they did the next morning.”

    Yup, that too…

    @Ross Heh!

  3. A few years ago the Forensic Science Service published a paper:

    outlines the toxicology results from 1014 cases of claimed drug-facilitated sexual assault (DFSA) analysed at the Forensic Science Service, London Laboratory between January 2000 and December 2002. Where appropriate, either a whole blood sample and/or a urine sample was analysed for alcohol, common drugs of abuse and potentially stupefying drugs. The results were interpreted with respect to the number of drugs detected and an attempt was made to distinguish between voluntary and involuntary ingestion from information supplied. Alcohol (either alone or with an illicit and/or medicinal drug) was detected in 470 of all cases (46%). Illicit drugs were detected in 344 cases (34%), with cannabis being the most commonly detected (26% of cases), followed by cocaine (11%). In 21 cases (2%), a sedative or disinhibiting drug was detected which had not been admitted and could therefore be an instance of deliberate spiking. This included three cases in which complainants were allegedly given Ecstasy (MDMA) without their knowledge. Other drugs detected included gammahydroxybutyrate (GHB) and the benzodiazepine drugs diazepam and temazepam. Another nine cases (1%) involved the complainant being either given or forced to ingest pharmaceutical tablets or an illicit drug.outlines the toxicology results from 1014 cases of claimed drug-facilitated sexual assault (DFSA) analysed at the Forensic Science Service, London Laboratory between January 2000 and December 2002. Where appropriate, either a whole blood sample and/or a urine sample was analysed for alcohol, common drugs of abuse and potentially stupefying drugs. The results were interpreted with respect to the number of drugs detected and an attempt was made to distinguish between voluntary and involuntary ingestion from information supplied. Alcohol (either alone or with an illicit and/or medicinal drug) was detected in 470 of all cases (46%). Illicit drugs were detected in 344 cases (34%), with cannabis being the most commonly detected (26% of cases), followed by cocaine (11%). In 21 cases (2%), a sedative or disinhibiting drug was detected which had not been admitted and could therefore be an instance of deliberate spiking. This included three cases in which complainants were allegedly given Ecstasy (MDMA) without their knowledge. Other drugs detected included gammahydroxybutyrate (GHB) and the benzodiazepine drugs diazepam and temazepam. Another nine cases (1%) involved the complainant being either given or forced to ingest pharmaceutical tablets or an illicit drug.

    USA studies have reached similar conclusions.

  4. I must admit to having read the Guardian on most days in the last ten years and not realised that the drugging of women in bars with Rohypnol was one of their sacred cows?

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