Last Tuesday night while out at a bar with my brother and a mutual friend, I was very likely “roofied” — someone slipped drugs into my drink.
The three of us have been going out for drinks once a month for going on 10 years now. We like whiskey, so we choose bars with a good selection. We especially like it when the bar makes great cocktails.
This month we chose a new speakeasy, a place we’d not visited before. I arrived first and went in, taking a seat in the bar. The bar is shaped like a backwards L, and I took the seat in the corner. Our friend, Mike, came about fifteen minutes later, and at some point later my brother, Rick, showed up. We sat three in a row at the bar.
We were drinking cocktails that night. We’d been there a couple hours or so as I finished my second cocktail and set out to order my third and final one of the night. I felt someone behind me, and occasionally caught this person, a woman, out of the corner of one eye. It was like she was hovering around us. She said something to, or asked a question of, Mike and he chatted with her briefly. Shortly I heard him invite her into our conversation. About then I chose and ordered my third cocktail. Then I found this woman sitting next to me, on the stool Mike had been occupying. I guess Mike and Rick moved down the bar to make room. And then this woman monopolized me in conversation.
I thought it was odd, but whatever, I’ll chat with whomever I guess. I mostly asked her questions about herself and let her talk. As I sat there drinking and talking, I felt myself becoming very intoxicated very fast. I drink regularly and I know what three cocktails feel like. This was way beyond that.
In my haze, I don’t remember finishing that cocktail. I do remember another cocktail appearing in front of me that I don’t remember ordering. I thought, “should I even be drinking this?” as I picked it up and took a sip of it. I have a vague memory that some sort of shot may have been placed before me, too. I don’t remember whether I drank it or not. My memories are spotty from here, and I”ll recount things as well as I can.
I suddenly and urgently needed to use the restroom. I ran in and became quite sick. Someone kept knocking on the door while I was in there and I kept yelling to be patient, I’d be out shortly. Finally I cleaned myself up and texted my brother: I need to exit quickly and quietly. Can you pay the bill and I will pay you back?
I stumbled back to the bar, unsteady on my feet. The woman was still there, talking with my brother. Mike had gone. I was a mess, and I knew it, and I probably said to Rick that I needed to get out of there. I said some sort of polite goodbye to the woman, who was standing right there with my brother. He guided me to my car and drove us to his condo a couple miles away. I remember going to the car and getting in, and then I remember shivering outside the back door to Rick’s place waiting to be let in, and I remember sitting down on his couch. I have no memory of anything else from the time we left the bar.
Next thing I remember is waking up to Rick sitting in his club chair opposite me. I had been out for a couple three hours at that point. When I woke up I felt a lot better — I felt a little hung over, but was lucid and sober.
I stayed for a while to be sure I was okay, and Rick and I debriefed the night a little. He said I’d been in the restroom for about a half an hour, and he was getting worried. I had no idea it had been that long — I thought ten minutes, tops. Rick said he texted me while I was in there. I had no memory of that, so I checked my phone. He had indeed texted — You alive? — and I had responded, I’m not great. I checked the timestamp; I had been at the bar about 4 hours by then. I saw that he had texted me about a half hour before: Looking pretty rough there, boss, want to go back to my place for a nap, or to [nearby neighborhood] for some water and walking? He must have texted that while I was sitting at the bar. I responded, Thanks for noticing. I’m not sober enough to drive home. Need a min to sober up. He replied, Let’s do that Not Here, I’m good to drive. I guess I dashed for the restroom within a few minutes after that.
I saw that I had texted my wife along the way: I think I got drugged to night I’m a mes. Rick is taking g care of me. I’m pretty sure I sent that after we reached my brother’s. That was a little more than three hours before I woke up at Rick’s.
In retrospect, I would have been wise to sleep the night on Rick’s couch. Instead, I drove home. I got there fine, thankfully, and went straight to bed.
The next morning I still felt a little hung over, but I also felt mildly disoriented and was a little unsteady on my feet. On advice from my wife and a good friend I went to the ER to get checked out. They ran drug tests, did an EKG, and also did a CT scan in case I had bumped my head along the way. The EKG and CT scan revealed nothing wrong, but my blood pressure was quite high, 170/100, which is very unusual for me. The drug tests came back negative, but the doctor said that they couldn’t test for the drug most commonly used in these cases, something called GHB. You have to test for it within 12 hours, and it had been 16 or 17.
When you read in the news of people being roofied, the victims are women and the object is usually sexual assault. I have to assume in my case the object was robbery. The woman was probably working with a partner, probably a man, who was waiting for victims to stumble out to their cars, where he’d knock them on the head or something and take their valuables. I’m glad Rick was there to take me out and drive me away, which certainly saved me from that fate.
I got over the physical after effects after a couple of days, but I still feel heavy with the knowledge that a crime was committed against me.