What to do if You’ve Been Sexually Assaulted After Your Drink was Spiked

Posted on: 3 mins read
Kate Hall

Solicitor Graduate, Abuse

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Did you watch the BBC Documentary: “Catching a Predator”? It explored the crimes of Reynhard Sinaga, a student from Indonesia who raped 206 men over the course of two years, after spiking their drinks with Gamma Hydroxybutyrate (GHB). Many of Sinaga’s victims had been so heavily spiked that they could not recall the assaults. It remains the biggest rape case in British Legal History.

Then there’s serial rapist and murderer Stephen Port who killed four men and raped multiple men using GHB between 2014 and 2015.

According to research, up to 15% of women and 7% of men have had their drinks spiked with either alcohol or drugs. This has increased by 50% over the last four years and in just two months the police will receive, on average, around 200 drink spiking incident reports.

What’s even more shocking about these statistics is that 21% of drink spiking incidents end in some sort of sexual assault, like rape.

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What is Drink Spiking?

Drink spiking is when someone puts drugs or alcohol into a person’s drink, without them knowing, with the sole intention of making them vulnerable to violence, theft, or sexual assault.

When drugs or alcohol are used to spike someone’s drink, it can often sedate or disable them, leaving them weak, defenceless and exposed to predators.

Drink spikers tend to use alcohol or the following types of drugs to spike their victims’ drinks:

  • common date rape drugs like Rohypnol (or Roofie) and Gamma Hydroxybutyrate (GHB);
  • recreational drugs like Ecstasy, Lysergic Acid Diethylamide (LSD), or Ketamine;
  • prescription drugs like tranquilizers, sedatives, or opiates.

What Happens to you When Your Drink is Spiked?

One of the biggest reasons why drink spiking is so common and so incredibly dangerous is because you won’t usually know it’s happened to you until it’s too late.

Your drink will taste, look and smell exactly the same: You’ll have no idea that someone has put something in it until the effects of the drugs or alcohol have seeped into your bloodstream, which usually takes between 15 – 30 minutes.

In most cases, the first time you’ll know you’ve been spiked is when you start to experience symptoms like these:

  • lowered inhibitions;
  • dizziness or loss of balance;
  • feeling sleepy;
  • blurry vision;
  • severe confusion;
  • nausea;
  • vomiting;
  • unconsciousness.

What to do if You’ve Been Sexually Assaulted After Your Drink was Spiked

One of the most tragic things about this drink spiking epidemic is that only 8% of those that have been raped or abused after being spiked, will report it to the police.

The majority of people either feel too ashamed, can’t really remember what happened, or even blame themselves for not keeping an eye on their drink.

If you’ve been sexually assaulted after your drink was spiked, you must report it to the police as soon as you can. This will hopefully allow you to get justice for what they did to you, but also prevents them from being able to do this to someone else.

Most date rape drugs will leave your system within 72 hours (GHB will actually leave your body within 12) so it’s crucial that you go to the police as soon as you can so they can capture the evidence.

Get in contact with our team of Abuse Lawyers. We know how hard it is to speak about something so unimaginably terrifying and traumatic but we’re here for you. We’ll handle your case with the utmost care, sensitivity and discretion.

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Is There Anything I can do to Stop my Drink From Being Spiked?

Although it’s difficult to know if your drink has been spiked, there are several things you can do to protect yourself:

  • never leave your drink unattended;
  • don't accept a drink from someone you don't know;
  • consider sticking to bottled drinks;
  • avoid jugs of cocktails.

It sounds obvious but always tell someone, like a friend or relative, where you’re going on a night out. Don’t tell strangers where you live, and if you think your drink might have been tampered with, don’t drink it.

If you’ve been raped or sexually abused after having your drink spiked, please remember that it was not your fault, and you are not to blame.

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