UH student reports sexual assault in date-rape drug incident - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

UH student reports sexual assault in date-rape drug incident

Posted: Updated:
Hemenway Hall courtyard Hemenway Hall courtyard
Wayne Ogino, UH chief of campus security Wayne Ogino, UH chief of campus security

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) – The University of Hawaii Manoa is warning students to be on alert after a female student said she was given the "date-rape drug" on campus and sexually assaulted Friday night.

It's the first time UH officials have received the report of a "date-rape drug" incident on the Manoa campus. 

The UH Manoa student said it all started around 6 p.m. Friday on campus, in the Hemenway Hall courtyard outside the Manoa Garden restaurant and bar. 

The woman told UH security she was alone when two men she did not know started talking to her and gave her a glass of whiskey, which she drank, according to Wayne Ogino, UH chief of campus security. 

"And that's the last she remembers because after she took the drink, apparently, she just blacked out," Ogino said.

She told UH security she woke up six to seven hours later in an off-campus apartment, and did not know the man who she was with at the time.  She could not remember the neighborhood, the street or information about the apartment, Ogino said.

The woman said she stumbled away from the apartment, and got a ride from a passerby, who took her to her home which is off the UH Manoa campus, he said.

The woman reported being sexually assaulted, Ogino said, and was examined by staff at The Sex Abuse Treatment Center at Kapiolani Medical Center.

"She apparently finally went to the Sex Abuse Treatment Center on Monday and she also stopped at our Women's Center to get further advice, and that's when security was notified about it, so there was quite a delay until we found out," Ogino said.

Experts say sex abuse treatment medical staff can obtain medical evidence from rape victims up to 72 hours after they have been sexually assaulted.

The UH issued a security alert on the Manoa campus late Monday afternoon, once security officials learned of Friday night's incident.

UH senior Rachel Domingo of Nuuanu talked about the incident with friends as they ate lunch Tuesday in the very courtyard where the incident began.

"It's honestly scary, because it could happen to anyone," Domingo said.

Christy Watanabe, a UH junior, said, "I think it's pretty scary, considering that it wasn't late at night.  It kind of happened in daylight.  No one kind of suspected anything and saw anything going on."

Students said they're following common sense rules to protect against others who might try to use the "date-rape drug" on them.

"Always make sure you always pay attention to what you get from other people," said UH sophomore Charlee Kapiioho, quoting advice from her mother. "Don't receive drinks from other people. Always be aware of what you're drinking.  And if you're holding a drink, to like, cover it."

Ogino, the UH's security chief, said, "The main thing is to be aware of this problem and use caution.  If you are going out and socializing, it's probably best to do it with friends, so you can take care of each other."

The police have not opened a criminal investigation yet, Ogino said.

"The police really need a complainant.  And they need identification of who the suspects are.  And that's the difficulty of it. She can't remember," Ogino said.

Copyright 2012 Hawaii News Now. All rights reserved.