Drug facilitated crimes (DFC) occur when an individual violates aspects of the law while under the influence of drugs. Examples of crimes can include robbery, sexual assault, money extortion or battery. Biological samples collected after drug facilitated sexual assault (DFSA) require comprehensive toxicology testing to determine the drug or drugs present. Unique factors and considerations include sample matrix, assay sensitivity and scope, and toxicologist interpretation.
The CFSRE conducts research involving instances of drug facilitated crimes – the most common case type being those arising from drug facilitated sexual assault. In collaboration with partnering toxicology laboratories, data is compiled and consolidated to determine drug prevalence and implications. Additionally, analytical testing is applied for various drugs of interest, including alcohol, gamma hydroxybutyrate (GHB), benzodiazepines, and other sedative substances. Understanding the impacts of drugs facilitated crimes requires 1) comprehensive analytical research that allows for discovery of all intoxicating substance(s) present, 2) comparative and quantitative data for case review, and 3) surveying of the landscape drugs or drug combinations detected among these scenarios over time.
Results from research at the CFSRE have been used to determine appropriate scope of testing for cases from drug facilities crimes. This allows laboratories to assess the most commonly detected drugs and develop new methodologies for substance not currently in their testing regimes.
The CFSRE develops informative open-access resources to contribute to the scientific community, including scientific reports or publications and training or educational materials.
Peer reviewed publications