Twelve young women were hospitalized this weekend after apparently being drugged with roofies at a party. Police have arrested one man — but the victims may be punished too.
According to the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, about 50 people were at the Friday night party in Roslyn, Washington, many of them students at nearby Central Washington University. Partygoers say women soon began passing out — says student Chris Unger, "When I got there people started falling like flies. I carried about four people downstairs. ... We were pretty much worried about them passing out and stuff because they were not responsive — they weren't doing anything." And fellow student Tayor Fish tells Q13 Fox, "The whole basement just looked like a trauma center. There was about seven to twelve bodies down there... Yeah I mean, eyes rolled in the back of their head." "Definitely a drug was in the chaser bottle that that everyone was chasing their drinks with," says student Lindsay Garske. The police also believe a date rape drug like roofies was involved — they say no one at the party was drinking particularly heavily. When they arrived at the scene, they found one woman whom having sex while "semiconscious" — her partner was apparently her boyfriend, but according to The News Tribune, the police "still have serious concerns about the incident."
It's incredibly disturbing that someone might have tried to incapacitate entire party for women, potentially with the intent to assault them. But the reaction of university authorities and fellow students is upsetting too. One man was apparently arrested in connection with the drugging, but the victims — many of whom were apparently under 21 — may face repercussions as well. The Seattle Post-Intelligencer writes,
At a minimum, each student will face a conduct hearing. They also may be required to take an intensive drug and alcohol education course, be referred to certified alcohol and drug counselor or suspended from school, the administration said in a statement.
According to KNDO, some students support such punishment. Says sophomore Makayla Tissue of the victims, "It's really unfortunate that they made that decision because they know better. They shouldn't have been out drinking." She adds, "I definitely believe there should be some repercussions to their actions because a lot of us choose not to go out and drink but when they get away with it, it's frustrating." Yes, underage drinking is a crime, but the twelve women who were hospitalized (one remains in critical but stable condition, according to the NY Post) hardly "got away with it." And police chief Scott Ferguson criticized partygoers for not calling 911, but maybe they'd be more likely to do so if they didn't fear expulsion for drinking. University alcohol policies should put the safety of students first — and in this case, Central Washington may be putting more women at risk by discouraging them from coming forward. Nice job with that.
A Dozen Girls Sickened By Date-Rape Drug Spiked Vodka [NY Post]
12 Hospitalized From Overdoses At College Party, Everyone OK [Q13 Fox]
CWU Reacts To Mass Drug Overdose [KNDO]
Central Wash. U: Some Overdose Party-Goers May Be Suspended [Seattle Post-Intelligencer]
12 Students Hospitalized For Overdose After Roslyn Party [The News Tribune]
Image via Q13 Fox