MAHWAH, NJ (CBS 2 / WCBS 880) – After an alarming spike in student alcohol poisoning cases, Ramapo College administrators are banning the alcoholic energy drink known as Four Loko.

LISTEN: WCBS 880’s Sean Adams reports from Mahwah

The ban comes after 16 students having been hospitalized with at least half of dozen involving the drink known by the nicknames “liquid cocaine” and “blackout in a can,” reports CBS 2 HD’s Kathryn Brown.

Ramapo College President Peter Mercer says his administration is worried about the high alcohol drink’s emergence on campuses.

“It’s very dangerous. Students who consume it become intoxicated very quickly, and we know it’s been banned at other colleges so we didn’t wait around for toxicology reports. We just banned it right away,” Mercer says.”It concerns us that this product is on the market because it certainly contributes to it.”

The drink comes in a 23.5 ounce can and is equal to drinking three beers, a can of Red Bull and a shot of espresso. Many of the Four Loko flavors contain 12 percent alcohol by volume, making it easy for those with even the highest level of tolerance to become intoxicated.

“I’ve seen guys—very big, who can have a high tolerance for alcohol, drink one and a half of these and not remember their entire night,” says senior Sara Rahimi.

The drinks are sold in a variety of fruit flavors, packaged inside brightly-colored cans and cost only about $2.50 each.

Junior Noah Luogameno says it’s a drink that will keep you up until the early morning.

“It makes you party all night long,” Luogameno says.

Despite its prevalence on campus, most students support the ban.

“I guess I would say I support the ban because they’ve been a dangerous drink around campus lately,” says senior Rob Talalai.

Senior Ricardo Del Carmen also supports the ban.

“I think that’s the right decision because it’s also a slash energy drink so I’m pretty sure it’s gonna hype up,” Del Carmen says.

The problem isn’t limited to college campuses though. Police say a number of Mahwah high schoolers have also gotten into trouble after drinking the potent mix of energy and alcohol.

Mahwah Police Chief James Batelli says Four Loko has been found both on and off high school campuses.

“We’re finding that the liquor stores are selling a tremendous amount. We spoke with one liquor establishment who gets 10 cases a week and sells out in a couple days and can’t get any more,” says Batelli.

He and other local officials are pushing for the state’s attorney general to investigate whether the fruity-energy-drink is being improperly marketed to underage drinkers.

The attorneys general in New York, Connecticut and California are also investigating the drink.

Comments (144)
  1. Casper says:

    I weight 80lbs and I drank an entire case of Four Loko.

    Now I’m a ghost.

  2. Joey says:

    I’ve seen friends of mine down two or three of those things over the course of a night and remain cognizant.

    Personally, I think they taste like Hawiian Punch spiked with Windex.

  3. Yes it was me says:

    Whooooooo faryed?

  4. Sheetcakes says:

    Hey HEY hEY HEY I’m On a comment board talking about College and about rites and rights!!!!!! Four loCOOOOLLLLKKKOoooO

  5. tinkan says:

    Maybe they should just ban STUPID college kids. What a bunch of empty shells.

  6. Dunnyveg says:

    Yes, I suppose if you don’t like them, then nobody should be drinking them. The problem with Politically Correct narcissism is that the world can only revolve around one of your kind.

  7. Lisa says:

    This is absolutely insane! I drank a can of this last night. I am a 24yr old female, weighing almost 120lbs. I got a good buzz going, that’s for sure, but in no way, shape or form was I intoxicated enough to not remember my night. The drink manufacturer is NOT responsible for what people consume. The drinker is the one responsible. On a college campus, are there many responsible, of-age drinkers? I highly doubt it. Peer pressure has a lot to do with it and to ban a drink because the students on campus are not responsible….what a crock. HOW ABOUT TEACHING THEM THE IMPORTANCE OF DRINKING RESPONSIBLY??? OR!!! How about you don’t allow alcohol on A COLLEGE CAMPUS! I’ve been to college. I’ve graduated. We were not allowed, no matter the age, to possess or drink alcohol on campus. Think about it.

    1. Relentless says:

      At Classy LISA: College Graduate? And you are drinking this stuff? That college education sure paid off for you…Your Family must be proud of their little girl!!!

      1. justliketherazor says:

        why you generalizing about her just because she drank four loco…so your saying if you drink four loco you’re an idiot?

      2. TheBigEasy says:

        I am in law school. So, does the fact that I had Four Loco in undergrad, as well as in law school, in any way mean that college didn’t pay off for me? I mean, if this is true, then I wouldn’t have made it into law school in the first place. Am I wrong?

  8. dd says:

    WHY IS IT A BIG DEAL!? It has alcohol like wine. Stupid fuc.ks

  9. TJ B says:

    Sorry, the school property is private property and thus they determine the rules regarding anything. They can ban the use of cell phones if they wanted. The right to bear arms does not apply on most campuses. Finger it out lamers!

  10. dizzy says:

    I’m starting from the premise that many of those commenting here were linked from Drudge. If I’m wrong, my apologies. If I’m right though… I don’t really understand the inconsistency in approach. Yes, public and private institutions can and do restict rights routinely. My homeowners association can restrict me from painting my house rainbow color, my employer can restrict me from particpating in political rallys, and colleges can restrict both the army and credit card companies from recruiting on campus.
    That said, the same crowd has no problem allowing an 18 year old man-boy to purchase a weapon, or to go overseas to fight in a war, or let a child (or someone tryng to raise one) go without health care coverage.
    So are we all children that need the government’s hand-holdinng, or are we adults that should be allowed to determine our own destiny?

    1. Dylan Ram-Brick says:

      You seem to suffer from some strange delusion that everyone that reads Drudge should hold the exact same opinion about everything. Drudge is a news aggregator, yes he writes the headlines but not the stories they link to. I have never understood the prejudice against him. How is what he does any different from the Huffington Post or Fark or any other news aggregator or blog that I read?

      To be fair I do know why the Drudge hatred got started Once upon a time he ran a story that Monica Lewinsky had a dress with the presidents semen on it. For a week or two he was ridiculed by various politicians, some who later said they were assured in private by the president that such a dress could not exist. So everyone hates him for being right and embarrassing a lot of people.

    2. Relentless says:

      Dizzy-obviously you are a liberal who visits Drudge out of a sense of jealousy and guilt for being a liberal.
      To purchase and bear arms is still a constitutional right(though the left’s DIZZY attempts at taking that away still rage on.
      The young adults who are overseas fighting for US right now are doing so voluntarily and without a standing army we would be ran over-slaughtered and made to Kiss The Boots of one of your favorite communist/socialist countries. Go cry on CODE PINKS soiled shoulder if you need to express your grief that we are still the worlds last bastion of Freedom on this planet. Or leave…
      After the Mid-Terms-the Health Care Reform Actwill be repelled and yes-unfortunately everything in this world isn’t free-some will go without-some will suffer. In the Liberals attempt to create an Utopian America where everyone is somehow equal and nobody goes without who cares if our cherished rights and constitution is sacrificed in the process. Trickle down stupidity from Obama to Polosi to you equals a weakened and ridiculous example of what a real American should be.
      Now go away….don’t you have a John Stewert/Colbert political rave to hitchhike too?

  11. joshuaives says:

    The next and soon to be announced Ramapo College ban on 70 oz and 120 oz bottles of Captain Morgan ‘Spiced’ Rum represents a silver linining in the malicious Four Loko student poisonings. When consumed each of these ‘spiced’ bottles equal an astonishing 70 and 120 beers respectively. Our crack administrators at Ramapo are waiting results on how much the 150 oz bottles equal on the beer scale (sources speaking on condition of anonymity say it may even be more than the 120 oz!). My suspicion — the folks behind Four Loko and those behind the satanic lyrics of ACDC’s serial killing inducing song Night Prowler may be one in the same.

  12. Dylan Ram-Brick says:

    Does anyone do the math for these stories? 1.5 cans of this would equal out to the equivalent of 7 regular strength mixed drinks or 12 ounce cans of conventional beer. How can you describe someone as ‘being a big guy with a high tolerance for alcohol’ and then claim they blacked out after seven drinks?

  13. Jonathan Mardukas says:

    All of you pepple need to get laid.

  14. Malcolm Tent says:

    Good Lord. The majority of the folks posting here have absolutely no clue whatsoever as to what a “right” is. Spend 20 or 30 seconds googling, or wikipediaing or whatevering and find out what you’re talking (ignorantly and incorrectly) about.

  15. Malcolm Tent says:

    Someone might need to investigate the definition of a “right”. After that, do a little work finding out what the college has the legal ability and, yes, right to ban.

  16. Gnarly Wheat Berries says:

    These are the people who organized and voted for Obama. They might as well drink this stuff. They will have no future, no jobs and lots of debt and taxes to pay. Party Hearty while you can boys and girls. Your education is worthless and so is your future.

  17. elmerglugh says:

    College appears to be a breeding ground for stupidity. If dying of alcohol poisoning is a civil right, we should be more than eager to let them exercise their civil rights off campus. Evolution may be a crock, but natural selection is the bomb.

  18. Hans Anderson says:

    I knew a guy who said someone told him they knew this dude that said he saw someone drink 1/4 can of this stuff and he got so drunk he went insane and killed a bunch of people and then his head blew up and he died!

    1. DJ says:

      Hans… you’re serious, huh?! Wow.

      What great sources you have… you knew a ‘guy’ who said ‘someone’ told him they knew ‘this dude’ that said HE saw ‘someone’?!?!?!? Are you f-ing kidding me?

      You must work for the NY Times as a fact checker. You are a moron.

      1. Liam says:

        I’m surprised you haven’t run into Hans at work, DJ. Clearly you hold a job as a sarcasm checker.

  19. r martin says:

    it’s should also be my right to pull my tax dollars that are funding your college, the hospital you are visiting, and the insurance premiums you are driving through the roof. this type of costly behavior is paid not by those who are participating, but by many taxpayers. many substances are controlled by laws – substances that appear to have costs to society as a whole. I think this one fits that description as well.

  20. 5card says:


    Jenkins is apparently more clever than you… If you understood what a pun was, and what the meaning of the word “rite” is, you’d realize that your English lesson was less than necessary.

  21. voiceofreason says:

    Easy there, all you Clarence Darrows. I know after taking almost a whole semester of Poli Sci 101 you’re all experts in U.S. Constitutional law now. However, your “civil rights” are still very much intact. A University can actually ban green M&M’s on their campus if they so choose to. It has nothing to do with your “civil rights” to get wasted (which I kept searching for in the Civil Liberties Act of 1964 but alas have not found it). It comes down to legal liability. Since you are on their campus property, there’s a point of assumed responsibility for your safety. If they don’t feel like having to deal with students dying from alcohol poisoning on their campus property and the legal fallout from that, they are within their rights to ban any or all alcoholic beverage. If you are of legal drinking age, you are more than free to take yourself off campus and drink that rot gut to your heart’s content. Just don’t get in a car and put yourself on the road (that’s violating someone else’s civil right to being able to drive safely home without getting creamed by a drunk driver) and don’t waste tax payer’s resources by crying for an ambulance once you realize the large amount of poison you just ingested.

    1. joshuaives says:

      The soon to be announced Ramapo College ban on 70 oz and 120 oz bottles of Captain Morgan ‘Spiced’ Rum represents a silver linining in the malicious Four Loko student poisonings. When consumed each of these ‘spiced’ bottles equal an astonishing 70 and 120 beers respectively. Our crack administrators at Ramapo are waiting results on how much the 150 oz bottles equal on the beer scale (sources speaking on condition of anonymity say it may even be more than the 120 oz!). My suspicion — the folks behind Four Loko and those behind the satanic lyrics of ACDC’s serial killing inducing song Night Prowler may be one in the same.

    2. AlNino says:

      Hold on there Clarence.

      “…someone else’s civil right to being able to drive safely home without getting creamed by a drunk driver”

      Driving is a privilege, not a civil right

      1. voiceofreason says:

        Alnino…uhm yeah I know what the difference is. it was being facetious with the statement to illustrate for ridiculous the other posters were. in short…it was a joke.
        I’m actually more than familiar with the U.S Civil Rights..thanks

        Also…the “clarence” not me. Look up who Clarence Darrow is…ugh.

  22. Saul says:

    I drink this stuff every day no big deal. I love the flavors and colorful labels.

    1. Daniel says:


  23. "SMOKIN' JOE" says:

    They must be liberals, conservatives have more sense.

    1. TOKIN' JOE says:

      That is the most hilariously naive thing I’ve read on the internet in a long time. Thanks, buddy.

  24. JP says:

    This stuff is poison and should be banned by the FDA. Just yesterday here in Tampa area a young man was found sleeping naked on a neighbor’s home, house tore up, bleeding from broken glass — admitted to drinking a can of Four Lokos. Two months ago in St. Petersburg another hyped up on Four Lokos barreled through a red light at night, killing a father and his three sons returning home from a ball game. NOBODY has the right to injest such a debilitating drug.

    1. DS says:

      Dude… you are a moron. Drinking this stuff is the same as having vodka and Red Bull. There is no ‘black magic’ in it. Are you really that stupid to believe that the FDA would have approved this in the first place if it wasn’t just a normal energy drink with booze in it?!?!? You are truly an idiot.

      1. Connor says:

        DS, it’s funny you’re calling someone a moron and giving credit to the FDA in the same breath. You’re actually pretty “stupid” if you’re going to believe the FDA always has citizens’/consumers’ best interests at heart. They operate the same way that a major corporation does: money is a fine wax. The FDA approves stuff all the time that isn’t good for us or hasn’t been completely tested yet.

        Liberal or conservative, doesn’t matter — everyone can agree that the FDA, FTC, FCC and all those government admins aren’t exactly “doing God’s work”, unless God’s work is taking handouts and finding new ways to exploit the working class for tax dollars.

    2. Drew says:

      I wasn’t naked, i had underwear on AND most of my cuts were from the stupid dog next door and all of the bushes and branches blocking the window i jumped through. News reporters always blow everything out of proportion!

  25. A true statement says:

    No one has a right to do anything on someone else’s property. The land is university land, not the students’. Students go earn your own property THEN you can do whatever legal stupid thing you want on it. Until then you are dead weight for your parents and society and have no rights. And most of you haven’t paid a dime in taxes so don’t lecture responsible tax paying citizens about civil rights.

    1. Connor says:

      Teapartier… spoken like a true moron.

      I have a question for all “teapartiers” out there. Do you make more than $250,000 a year? And if you do are you really so greedy that you’re marching and complaining about having to pay a little higher percentage of income you make (only the income that’s over $250k??

      To answer, most teapartiers (and most of the friggin country, regardless of political ideology) DON’T make that much money. So all you people once again voting against your own best interests, all you people who’ve forgotten that Bush passed the first bailout, who watch Fox and believe what they say. YOU are the reason this country is going down the toilet.

      I know this isn’t really the discussion for this, but someone had to say it.

    2. TheBigEasy says:

      Dude, if the university wants to ban the drink on campus then so be it. But saying that college kids are dead weight and have no rights? Come on now. That’s just plan mean.

    3. True story says:

      If students like me are paying $30,000 a year, which most schools are starting to cost, almost usually via loans, we better be able to drink wherever we want. Hop off your high horse, school was probably 30 bucks a year when you were our age, you sound old the way you talk down.

  26. jimmy Boom says:

    You are so correct. These students have every right to do the stupidest things they can come up with. This one is way up there! Have at it kids! Now, hospital workers and ambulance drivers, get ready, these kids are ready to waste your time by excersising their civil rights. Please pay to have extra crew at the ready for these amazing displays of stupidity. Hey parents, arent you proud your kids were smart enough to get into college?

  27. professor dingle says:

    I didn’t drink in college, and look at me know I’m a 35 yr old virgin. don’t let this happen to you.

  28. Jenkins says:


  29. Bob Tussey Merced California says:

    Anyone who drinks to get drunk has a drinking problem. I am now 65 selldom drink anymore but used to, Never did I set out to get stoned or drunk.

    1. the realist says:

      then u my friend are a loser…at the young age of 17 I bet i have scored more tail then u

    2. Nakita says:

      Exactly…I ask my friends who get drunk why they do because you can never remember what happened if your why get drunk…I rarely drink and when i do its just to get a buzz and then im done..

    3. bob smalss says:

      you haven’t lived. ever.

  30. Drake says:

    @clare, You’re a moron. Stay in school

  31. Brad says:

    It’s called In Loco Parentis. Colleges and Universities have a legal repsonsibility to act in place of a parent to keep the students safe even from themselves. The old addage “not while your living under my roof” applies.

    1. gullyborg says:

      “Colleges and Universities have a legal repsonsibility to act in place of a parent to keep the students safe even from themselves.” Ummmm…. NO. We are talking about COLLEGES, where students are all adults over the age of 18 and legally responsible for their own actions and – on the presumption anyone buying the product is over 21 – legally able to purchase and consume alcohol. There is no, zero, zilch, zip, nada legal responsibility for the university to parent the student.

    2. Erick says:

      In Loco Parentis stopped being the guiding principle for institutions of higher education in 1961 with Dixon v. Alabama when they expelled students without due process, under the guise of it being in their best interest. Your argument is invalid.

      I don’t really understand the point of this article. How can a college ban a drink? Is this a wet campus that sells alcohol? If so, I guess I understand, but it seems to me like banning this drink will not help anything. Students will still get it in other ways. The statement they’ve made only publicizes it more and makes more students want to try it.

  32. brad says:

    A university can ban products from their campus if they want to. There are plenty of public and private universities that do not allow any alcohol on campus, even if you are over 2.

  33. Relentless says:

    This pertains to all the clueless people leaving comments on this blog regarding ‘student rights’…it’s sad that i even have to point this out…maybe you all need to go back to grade school and start your education over.
    Point is all colleges have conduct codes and rules that students have to adhere to…violation of that code which all students have to agree to can mean expulsion or other levels of punishment. A hazardous and potentially fatal drink as Four Loko can easily be regarded as infringing on the safety of other students, to include the student drinking it. Also, parents that have kids at these colleges put a certain amount of responsibility and expectations in the school to look after their kids who, though technically adults are seriously lacking in real world experience and maturity.

    Campus Life policies & procedures
    Student Conduct Code

    The college has adopted a Student Conduct Code to protect the rights of students, faculty, staff and the college itself. This code ensures that the Columbia College learning community is one characterized by mutual respect, civility and good citizenship. Columbia College students, as members of the academic community, are expected to accept and adhere to these high standards of personal conduct.

    1. jeff says:

      relentless, you are just as clueless. you posted the student conduct code from columbia college, not Ramapo. the story doesn’t state whether they have a code of conduct, or even a drinking provision within said code of conduct so assuming they are only banning one type of beverage would lead most readers to believe there is no drinking policy amongst drinkers of legal age on/off campus. get a clue loser.

  34. jazz says:

    The school can keep anything off their campus they want, you twits!

  35. boffen says:

    Sure, blame the JOOSE, its always the JOOSE!

  36. Robert Davis says:

    The problem is not necessarily alcohol in and of itself but the potency of the drinks. In the 70’s we never drank anything other than beer which made it almost (but not entirely) impossible to come down alcohol poisoning. It just took too long and require too much volume of beer to get there. Kids these days are drinking much more distilled spirits or the high alcohol drinks mentioned in the article.

    Someone should take a look at who is producing and how they are marketing these drinks.

    1. Beach Bum says:

      Dude… these drinks are the new wine cooler. They’re the bomb. I live in Cali and been drinking CORE. Tastes better than Four Loko and I think it’s got mroe caffeine and junk in it cause I get wrecked too good but keep goin. Loko is a Joko… Stay the CORE!!

  37. Dtrain says:

    This stuff and Joose don’t mess around. One of our friends who weighs 220lbs. basically chugged a can and got us booted out of four working-man’s casinos due to inebriation (we are all mid 20’s and seasoned veterans of the sauce). You aren’t kidding.

  38. jeff says:

    sorry, was on the phone while typing. as long as you are of legal age you should be allowed the choice of a legal product. and again, clare you are a dimwit.

  39. jeff says:

    as long as you are legal, having your own choice is dimwit. it’s a legal product.

  40. Instigator says:

    College is a place to transition into adulthood and prepare for life. As a society, we’re becoming crippled because of this Nanny-state mentality.

    1. Bruce says:

      Gee – I always thought college was a place to extend your intelligence to a marketable level. You know – so you can get a JOB. Obviously they are failing badly there, though, since just about every post here by a “collige edekated stunet” exhibits a total lack of English grammar skills, sentence structure, and punctuation.

      Good work, kids! Hope you enjoy life living in a cardboard box on the side of a road, unemployable and stupid. Or at home living in mommy and daddies basement.

      1. RandomTandem says:

        Hey Bruce GRAMMAR FAIL! hahaha

  41. Instigator says:

    Since when did drinking copious amounts of alcohol become a civil right?

    1. john X says:

      Hey….pursuit o happiness

    2. jeff says:

      instigator – it’s not the fact that drinking alcohol is a civil right. it’s your right to choose amongst legal products as long as you are of legal age to consume. zodiac mindwarp could have phrased it a little better but you are just as big an idiot as clare for not thinking it through a little more. this makes you a dimwit, too.

    3. jeff says:

      its always been a civil right

    4. chicagoray says:

      I love being schooled on civil rights by people who doesn’t know the proper usage of dual meaning words like right and rite.

      Be sure you know how to spell and use correct grammar before slamming others and calling them disparaging names kiddies.

      Furthermore, it’s not a civil right to do whatever the hell you want while on the property of a school or workplace or anywhere else.

      Especially becoming intoxicated on their property to the point of needing medical assistance that a working adult taxpayer will end up footing the bill for when parents sue the school for their child’s dumb behavior, which happens all the time now in our ‘no personal responsibility’ society today.

      If you’re under 18 you’re still a kid and in most states until you’re 21, you got no rights when it comes to alcoholic purchase and consumption. It’s illegal.

  42. Brad says:

    SIX (at least?) out of 16 had that drink and they blame the drink and ban it? What about the, at least, TEN others? Sounds like there’s some other factors at work here that might need to be banned as well….like ALCOHOL?

  43. Jesse says:

    David, you’ve got to be kidding, right?

  44. david says:

    Oops, colleges should NOT teach students how to make beer, wine,, etc. I think that since the government isn’t going to do much to stop alcohol consumption, if the colleges do it first, maybe they can convince corporations to ban it from their company as well. I used to work for GE and every employee had to sign a contract whereby the employee was subject to termination if they were drinking during work hours, Unfortunately, they would still serve alcohol during dinners after business hours at company events. I thought that the company should have taken a harder stance on the subject, but I guess they didn’t want to ban it completely.

  45. MKFreedom says:

    21 is the legal drinking age you communist prick. Somebody should teach you what this country’s founding was all about. I’m sure the UK would appreciate your progressive/socialist views. Where have our liberties gone??? Where have the adults gone? It’s called choice. If a 21 year old wants to make a bad decision let them. It’s their freekin right.

  46. Pinch says:

    chester i have completed your challenge twice this afternoon already.

    1. durkn says:

      pinch, you are an american hero

  47. Ben says:

    they do have a right to put in their bodies whatever they want that is legal, you twit

  48. clare says:

    plenty of colleges allow of-age students to have alcohol on campus. why shouldn’t it be allowed? if they’re of age, they should be, though alcohol possession is not a civil right, as “zodiac mindwarp” (above) seems to think.

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