Boston police warns of uptick in drink-spiking, ‘roofie’ drugs at kick-off to summer

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Boston police issued a warning Monday noting “numerous social media posts” from various people claiming they were victims of drink-spiking at local bars over the Memorial Day weekend. 

The Boston Police Department issued a statement reminding the public of “the dangerousness of scentless, colorless and tasteless drugs” such as Rohypnol, also known as roofie, or other drugs such as GHB (gamma-hydroxybutyric acid) or Ketamine, “being placed in the drinks of unsuspecting victims.” 

“These drugs and substances can cause disorientation, confusion, temporary paralysis or unconsciousness along with a host of other symptoms, leaving the potential victim vulnerable to the intentions of the suspect,” the department said, urging anyone who believes they were a victim to call 911 or report the incident in person at any Boston Police District Station.

BOSTON POLICE CITE ‘TROUBLING’ UPTICK OF JUVENILES CARRYING GUNS 

Fans attend the Game On bar at Fenway Park on May 29, 2021. 

Fans attend the Game On bar at Fenway Park on May 29, 2021.  (Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)

The police department urged people gathering in social settings to use the buddy system, to be mindful that drinks are being served directly by a bartender or server, and to watch drinks at all times, including taking it to the restroom if needed. The warning said to use your hand or other items to cover drinks and to test drinks with test strips or nail polish that light up a certain color if they detect drugs.

Individuals are urged to get help immediately if they begin to feel dizzy, nauseated, light-headed or strange in any way. Police said to “be aware of any uncharacteristic behavior from your acquaintances and be wary of strangers attempting to lure individuals away from their friends.” 

Bar patrons before a game between the Boston Red Sox and the Miami Marlins on May 29, 2021, at Fenway Park in Boston. 

Bar patrons before a game between the Boston Red Sox and the Miami Marlins on May 29, 2021, at Fenway Park in Boston.  (Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)

The department said to contact police upon observing any individual who appears to be in distress, wandering alone late at night or dressed unsuitably for the weather. 

Boston police also noted the November 2021 advisory issued by the Licensing Board for the City of Boston regarding safety concerns for nightclub owners and other licensed establishments. 

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The advisory states that it is the business’ responsibility to ensure it is safe for patrons and free of illegal activity. It also says licensees should call 911 or otherwise notify police “to report suspicious or predatory behavior and when a problem patron or severely intoxicated patron is ejected.”