In at least one of the incidents the victim reported she had been sexually assaulted. In others, the women became sick, unusually intoxicated and passed out.
"These 'drugging' incidents are extremely serious," Police Chief Nader Oweis wrote in a release to the UC community.
He issued the following tips:
If You Think You May Have Been Drugged
• Seek immediate medical attention.
— Call 911 or ask a friend to transport you to the nearest facility offering medical care.
— There is no predictable way that a person will react to a drug or to know the dose that was given. In some instances these drugs can be fatal.
• Report the incident to law enforcement. They are available to help you.
— The UC Santa Cruz Police Department can be reached at 911 or 831-459-2231.
— The City of Santa Cruz Police Department can be reached at 911 or 831-420-5800.
— Whenever possible, attempt to contain any evidence for later analysis by police.
• Get support. Being victimized in this way can be a difficult experience and there is confidential support available through the following resources:
— Counseling and Psychological Services: 831-459-2628; http://caps.ucsc.edu
— Caitlin Stinneford, Violence Prevention Educator: 831-459-2721; http://healthcenter.ucsc.edu/shop/
— Stephanie Milton, Women's Center Director: 831-459-2072; http://womenscenter.ucsc.edu
What To Do If You Think Someone Else Has Been Drugged
• Be an active bystander. If you see someone who appears unable to care for themself, please step in and help.
• Seek immediate medical attention. Call 911 or transport the victim to the nearest facility offering medical care.
• Speak up if you know about a specific incident. The police and other staff on campus are here to support you.
• Designate a sober driver.
• Don’t drink on an empty stomach. Eat foods high in protein and fat, such as cheese or nuts.
• Set a drink limit and stick to it. Know when you’ve had enough.
• Be aware that drugs can be placed in any kind of drink and that many drugs are colorless, odorless and flavorless.
• Never leave your drink unattended. If you have to go to the bathroom, either finish your drink or throw it away.
• Beverages that come in sealed containers (unopened cans or bottles) are much safer than mixed drinks.
• If you order a mixed drink, watch the person who mixes it.
• Do not take any open beverages, including alcohol, from someone you do not know well and trust.
• Never drink anything out of a common punch bowl. Avoid beer bongs, chugging, and drinking games.
• If someone offers to buy you a drink, go up to the bar with them to accept the drink.
• Subscribe to the "buddy system." Always party with one or more friends, and keep an eye on each other.
• If someone begins to appear "too drunk," get them to a safe place. Always leave together.