Jul 29, 2014

Wheaton College Students Report Drinks Drugged at Local Bar

Sportsway Cafe under investigation.

Wheaton College Students Report Drinks Drugged at Local Bar

Two girls say they were drugged at a local bar this weekend, according to Wheaton Public Safety and Norton Police Department.

The incident was reported Friday, Nov. 16, when the two Wheaton College students reported suspicions of their drinks being tampered with at Sportsway Cafe.

“They alleged that on previous separate occasions they had experienced blackouts with no recollection of any events transpiring after they assumed alcohol while at the establishment,” said Norton Police Lieutenant Todd Jackson. “On both occasions the students reported they were escorted back to campus by friends.”

Wheaton Public Safety issued a safety alert regarding alcohol consumption to staff and students. It reminded the college community to pour or serve their own drinks, not to share drinks, not to drink from common containers like punch bowls and to open their own bottles or cans.

"Please be attentive to friends," the alert said. "If you believe an individual has become impaired due to alcohol or another substance, please call Public Safety or 911. Our alcohol policy, Safety Always Matters Most (SAMM), is always in effect."

Though this is the first report of a date rape drug being used at the popular college hangout, a bouncer was charged for sexually assaulting a Wheaton College student in February. According to Sun Chronicle, Paul A. Panaikas plead not guilty, saying the 21-year-old initiated the encounter, and was released on bail.

“[The owner] denies any of the allegations that anything like that ever occurred at the bar, but he is cooperating with us,” Jackson said.

The incident is under investigation by Norton Police Department. If you have any information call 508-285-3300.

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