SANTA MONICA—A Los Angeles Superior Court Judge on Monday, February 27 dismissed all, but one charge against a man accused of slipping ecstasy, also known as the “love pill” into his date’s drink at a Santa Monica hotel back in May 2016.
Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Upinder S. Kalra dropped 18 counts against Michael Roe Chien Hsu, 24, due to a bad warrant.
The defendant was ordered to stand trial on the remaining one count of felony poisoning. The arraignment was set for March 13. The defendant’s bail was also reduced from $350,000 to $50,000.
Officers from the Santa Monica Police Department arrested Hsu in May 2016 at Fig Restaurant located in the Fairmont Miramar hotel after 3 women witnessed the alleged attempted poisoning.
Sonia Ulrich and her two friends received tons of praise from people in their efforts to prevent a date rape at a Santa Monica restaurant.
Ulrich posted on her Facebook page on May 27, 2016 that she and her two female friends were at Fig, a restaurant inside the Fairmont Hotel off of Ocean Avenue. At the restaurant, the female trio noticed a man put something in another woman’s drink once she left her drink to go to the restroom. According to Ulrich, they all thought the man was on a date with the woman.
Ulrich wrote on Facebook, “After a few ‘Oh God. What do we do’s,’ I got up to find her in the bathroom to tell her. Warn her. Tell her to get up and leave this creep. Make him drink it. Something.” She further stated that, “So, after feeling awkward hanging out by the skins in the bathroom till she was done, I approached. ‘Hey! Um, this is kind of weird, but, um we saw the guy you were with put something in your drink.”
They apparently followed the woman to the restroom and told her what happened. Ulrich and her friends learned that the guy was one of the woman’s “best friends.” According to Ulrich, her friend Marla Saltzer originally noticed the incident. She flagged down a waiter and told him and her friends what she saw.
‘“He pulled her glass toward him, kind of awkwardly, then he took out a little black vial. He opened it up and dropped something in. Then he tried to play it cool, like checking his phone and hiding the vial in his hand and then trying to bring it back down slyly,’” Ulrich recalled Saltzer saying.
Surveillance footage captured Hsu pouring an unknown substance into the wine glass, according to a statement of probable cause filed by a SMPD officer. Hsu was taken into custody on charges of intent to commit rape and drugging with intent to commit a rape.
The alleged victim did not testify or show up to the preliminary hearing. Defense Attorney Joshua Ritter said her absence was “unusual.”
A drug expert testified that the victim told authorities that she believes Hsu may have drugged her before. She claimed she felt unexplained europium when she went out with Hsu and saw pictures of herself being affectionate with him, which is out of character.
Ritter stated that prosecutors overcharged his client and that the alleged victim was Hsu’s co-worker and had a sexual relationship with him for more than a year.
Hsu is scheduled to appear back in court on June 14 and is ordered not to contact or bother the alleged victim.
Written By Darylese Shook and Casey Jacobs