Dylan Owens was only 19 when he died four weeks ago due to a fatal heroin overdose. A friend (Maddison Rogers) had injected this drug into him, and his dead body was discovered with one hand handcuffed to a bedpost. There were three people in the house with him at the time, but they all waited hours before calling an ambulance. Even more disturbing is that at least one of these friends posted pictures of his dead body on Facebook. The friend who injected the heroin into Dylan’s body has been charged with involuntary manslaughter and ‘corrupting another with drugs’, but there have been no charges brought against the other two.
The only people who will ever know what really happened at the time of Dylan Owen’s death are the three who were with him. They were either drunk or high at the time, so maybe even they are not sure about what went down that night. Maddison Rogers claims that Dylan wanted the heroin and, if she hadn’t had injected it, he would have done it himself. They also claim that they moved his dead body to a bed and handcuffed him to the bedpost as a joke. There is confusion about who exactly took the pictures of Dylan’s corpse and posted them to Facebook.
What happened to Dylan Owens is horrifying. He was just about to enter the US army and had a two-year old son. His family and friends are devastated by what happened, and it has shaken the whole community where he lived in Ohio. How could something like this happen? The reality is that bad stuff happens all the time when people are high and drunk. There is no excuse for what happened, but there is no doubt that hanging around with the wrong crowd makes it far more likely that bad stuff will happen.
There will always be dangers involved in spending time with those with whom the relationship is based on taking drugs. The problem is that when a group of individuals are high, they can bring out the worst in each other. Intoxication reduces a person’s ability to make good decisions and, when a whole group is high, it can mean a form of group psychosis develops. When a group of people are out of control, it creates the conditions for horrible things to occur; exactly what happened to Dylan Owens. This type of group mentality developing around drug use means that even good, intelligent individuals start to behave in ways that are irrational and harmful. When people become intoxicated, they are at the mercy of those around them. It means the individual can be at higher risk of rape, physical abuse, etc.
What would motivate someone to post a picture of the dead body of Dylan Owens to Facebook? His relatives saw this image. There are plenty of benefits to using a social media outlet, but there are also more sinister aspects to it. These websites can actually encourage bad behaviour as users try to outdo each other in an attempt to get some ‘likes’. There are other examples of individuals drinking lethal alcoholic concoctions as part of a social media game. Considering the lengths that some will go to get approval on these websites, it is hardly too surprising that somebody would be willing to post an image of a dead friend.