Metro

Brown student tests positive for date rape drug

Received drink at Brown frat party

A Brown University student tested positive for a date rape drug after being served a mixed drink at a fraternity party last month, the school told students in an e-mail Saturday.

The announcement followed “credible reports” that two students might have been drugged via a punch served at a Sears House fraternity party on Oct. 17.

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The e-mail said the Department of Public Safety and the Office of Student Life have been actively investigating for criminal activity under Rhode Island state law as well as potential violations of Brown University’s code of student conduct. The e-mail was sent by the school’s vice president for campus life and student services, Margaret Klawunn, and the executive vice president for planning and policy, Russell Carey.

The statement said that one student tested positive for GHB (gamma hydroxybutyrate), a common date rape drug, and that the test for the second student is pending.

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“GHB is a colorless, odorless drug that can be hard to detect in a drink but has a strong sedative effect that is incapacitating,” the letter said. “It is a dangerous drug used as a predatory tool by those seeking to commit sexual violence.”

The drug is illegal under state law to possess, use, or distribute.

One of the two students also reported being sexually assaulted “as a result of her incapacitation,” the university said.

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The university suspended the Phi Kappa Psi fraternity, which hosted the party in the college dormitory, after the incident. At the time, the Globe reported Brown officials were also reviewing the school’s policies for alcohol service at campus events and issued a warning that those found responsible for sexual assault or the use of date rape drugs would be expelled and could face criminal prosecution.

The letter said the school expects to have more information soon and is encouraging anyone with relevant information to contact Sergeant John Carvalho of the Department of Public Safety at 401-863-3322.

RELATED:

10/28: Brown University students say they were given date-rape drug

Anne Steele can be reach
at anne.steele@globe.com.
Follow her on Twitter @AnneMarieSteele.
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