Sexual assault survivor develops napkin that detects date rape drugs

The Me Too movement is encouraging women to protect themselves like never before. A college student in Washington, D.C., has taken her assault and developed it into a crusade for change.

Whether it's a big party night or a casual hangout with friends, if you have a drink in your hand, you shouldn't let your guard down.

"70 percent of sexual assaults occur between two people that know each other," said Danya Sherman, founder and chief executive officer of KnoNap. She knows, because that’s exactly what happened to her.

"During my time in Spain, I was drugged and assaulted by a guy I considered a friend," said Sherman. Out of that experience, the "napkin that knows" was born.

"I started the company as a mode by which to gain closure,” said Sherman. “And it's grown into something by which I'm working to empower both women and men to have safer nights out."

How does the napkin work? Chemicals in the napkin cause it to change color when it detects a benzodiazepine, which is a class of drugs that when paired with alcohol cause amnesia, loss of consciousness and dizziness. You may know them as Rohypnol, Xanax and Valium. Simply wet the napkin using a straw or even your finger, and if there are any drugs present, the color of the napkin will change to red.

With so many other drug detecting products on the market, why a napkin? Sherman said because it's unisex and discreet.

"We wanted to create a product that could be seamlessly incorporated into any social setting," said Sherman. She claimed it will test more types of drugs than any other product in the market currently and will be available by the end of 2018.

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