Aspen law enforcement on the lookout for spiked drinks
January 24, 2010
ASPEN, Colo. (AP) – Overindulgence or a spiked drink? Law enforcement and at least one Aspen bar aren’t taking any chances after about a dozen people in separate incidents in Aspen and Snowmass reported memory loss believed caused by someone slipping them the date-rape drug Rohypnol, better known by its street name “roofies.”
Recent incidents didn’t involve sexual assault and have affected both men and women.
Bartenders at Belly Up, Aspen’s largest and busiest live-music bar, have been instructed to discard unattended drinks. Response, an area agency that deals with domestic violence, will distribute napkins warning bar patrons to watch their beverages.
Law enforcement has begun tracking reported incidents of memory loss believed caused by something more than alcohol.
People in the Aspen area report waking up in strange places such as a barn, a stranger’s snowbank and a detox center in another town with no memory how they got there. Some have suffered frostbite, bruises, even a broken nose.
“They are waking up in a fog, and they have lost time,” said Aspen police Sgt. Dan Davis. “They think they have been drugged.”
With no direct motive, other than the possible amusement of somebody, authorities question whether the incidents could be attributed simply to drinking.
“We wonder why someone would want to drug them,” said Snowmass Village Police Chief Art Smythe. “But the individuals involved in these incidents certainly believe it was more than alcohol.”
Aspen police are working on a Web site where suspected incidents can be reported and have begun tracking such incidents.
And people are asked to call law enforcement if their friends behave in a way that goes beyond “normal” drunkenness.