The Whitefish Police Department is cautioning bar-goers to keep a close eye on their drinks to prevent dangerous foreign substances from being placed in them.
Chief Bill Dial sent out a media release yesterday saying there have been unsubstantiated reports of both men and women who feel they may have been drugged at local bars. However, there have been no solid leads provided to law enforcement to substantiate the claims, Dial said.
Rohypnol, also known as roofie, is an illegal tranquilizer that can be dangerous when mixed with alcohol. It is frequently cited as a common date-rape drug used at night clubs and bars. It can produce extreme drowsiness, confusion, disorientation and reduced or loss of consciousness in as little as 20 to 30 minutes. The effects of Rohypnol can last from eight to 24 hours.
Dial provided a few tips for people frequenting the local bars to prevent drugged drinks:
— Do not leave your drink unattended or take a drink from a person you do not know.
— If you think your drink has been compromised, secure it for law enforcement.
— Avoid drinking water or other beverages from containers, like pitchers, that have been placed on the bar and are not monitored.
— If you or the people you are with suspect that some type of drug has been given to a person they are with, get the person to the emergency room and tell the emergency room staff that the person may have been drugged. Time is of the essence as many drugs leave the body rapidly. Being tested immediately or at the latest within 72 hrs is important.
— A person who feels they have been drugged and/or sexually assaulted should immediately contact law enforcement so that vital evidence can be preserved. Do not change clothes, shower or remove any thing from your person which may aid the police in their investigation. Anything told to law enforcement or medical professionals is confidential.
— Take care of each other, secure phones, wallets, purses and other valuables in the trunk of your car before entering a bar and most importantly make sure that friends get home safe.
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