View Full Version : Date rape in the early 1960's?

10-13-2011, 04:12 PM
A major part of the plot in my WIP has to do with the rape and murder of a 16 year old girl by a serial killer in the 1960's. The story is set in present-day, but the plot of the novel is basically set around this murder.

I'm trying to come up with a way for this girl to be drugged at a party by her killer and then kidnapped, but I'm having a hard time finding a way to accomplish this. Rohypnol wasn't synthesized until the 70's and ketamine wasn't developed until 1962, which just so happens to be the year just before this murder takes place. Would it be a stretch to have her raped under the influence of ketamine just a year after it was created?

What would be some alternatives to these date rape drugs that would be more plausible in the 1960's?


10-13-2011, 04:32 PM
In old detective novels, they frequently are non-specific, just 'slipping somebody a mickey'. Alternatively, I see nothing wrong with just the good old-fashioned 'get her drunk out of her mind'.

10-13-2011, 05:59 PM
It would have been booze.
If the villain is trying to be tricky, he could spike her punch, or ply her with something fruity loaded with rum.

10-13-2011, 06:55 PM
Already been said - booze. Especially if she was not used to it.

Devil Ledbetter
10-13-2011, 07:14 PM
Chloroform is pretty old school.

10-13-2011, 08:03 PM
A barbituate slipped into a cocktail is a "Micky Finn" in the sixties. For earlier references try wicki


Drachen Jager
10-13-2011, 08:31 PM
Benzodiazepine (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Benzodiazepine) was discovered in 1955 and readily available in 1960.
Also see wikipedia's article on date rape drugs (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Date_rape_drug#Types_of_drugs).

10-13-2011, 08:38 PM
Think 'Valley of the dolls'. Doctors were handing out pills like candy. LSD type drugs. Just listen to the music of that time period. Mind blowing/altering was pretty easy to use/try. I'm sure that any of them to excess had bad effects.

10-13-2011, 09:34 PM
As others have mentioned, barbiturates were a lot easier to get hold of in the 60s. An MF would probably be your best bet.

10-14-2011, 12:21 AM
Yes, barbituate and booze were the things used. Both were reasonably availble and reasonably effective.

10-14-2011, 04:18 PM
Thank you all for the great answers! Barbituate it is!

10-14-2011, 04:21 PM
I lived that era (as a child, mind you) and I agree with the recipe for a Mickey Finn. I heard my older sister talk about this with disgust, 'God, what'd he do to her, slip her a Mickey Finn?' (The name stuck with me for a long time because I didn't understand what was being talked about until I asked a more worldly, older friend.)

At least one of my sister's girlfriends ended up pregnant this way and I also remember the 'older folks' discussing it in the next room in heated whispers.

When I finally inquired about all of this many years later I was told it was no 'big deal' because she 'got somebody to marry her.'

Those were the days ...

10-14-2011, 04:39 PM
I know I've heard rumours of people being spiked with plain old paracetamol slipped into their drink, but I have no idea if it actually would have any effect. There are some great suggestions in this thread already, though, so if I were you I'd pick one of them.

10-14-2011, 05:37 PM
One thing that hasn't been addressed is date rape didn't exist as a term or a law in the 1960s. Although it definitely existed, it was much more commonly expressed as "What did she think was going to happen?" At that time, even in a violent rape, you could bring in the victim's past conduct.

In fact, a lot of romance novels revolved around date rape, although not expressed that way. Guy forces girl to have sex, but really loves her, and the sex awaken in her the desire to love this guy who just forced sex on her. Eh, we won't discuss the psychology around that.

Understand that the most common date rape drug is the same now as it was then -- booze. Secondary drug is recreational drugs that are in use. Other drugs would only be likely used when the perpetrator has this planned out in advance. Date rape most commonly is an opportunistic crime, with little advanced planning going into it.

Best of luck,

Jim Clark-Dawe

10-14-2011, 06:38 PM
Date rape did not have to exist as a law in the 60's because rape was against the law. Though proving it then was a hell of a difficult thing to do.

There was a little rhyme, not sure where/when it originated
However we dress
Where ever we go
Yes means yes
And no means no.

10-14-2011, 11:00 PM
Chloral Hydrate... pretty popular in the late '50s and early '60s... available in liquid and capsule, soluble in water - and alcohol (effect accelerated). I remember a case in the early '70s where a high school kid pilfered some (liquid) from his father's vet practice and was working his way through the cheerleaders. One overdosed and almost died - that's how he was caught.

FWIW, that's what was found in Marlyn Monroe's system during the forensic tox screening (post mortem).

10-14-2011, 11:25 PM
Was PCP around in the 60's? If so, that could be a different plot option.

Back in the day (not the 60's) where I smoked pot at parties -- but nothing stronger -- an acquaintance thought it would be funny to spike the joint with PCP. I forgot how to walk, and I couldn't make out what the pictures on the TV were. We all were quite upset. If your gal would smoke a little pot, that could be an interesting plot, imho.

Stijn Hommes
10-17-2011, 05:35 PM
You should also note that the sexual assault evidence kit wasn't developed until the 1970s. They were called Vitullo kits at the time because of their inventor. (http://www.lastlinkontheleft.com/fc0601vitullo.html)