DOCUMENT: Celebrity, Crime

More Sleazy "Survivor" Secrets

Fun with meth, acid, coke, booze for CBS show's contestants

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Christa Hastie

Ryan Shoulders

Ryan Opray Arrest

SEPTEMBER 2--In a reality television first, CBS has disclosed an arrest in the biography of a woman competing on "Survivor," a new season of which starts September 18. But the minor bust of Christa Hastie is hardly the most interesting thing in the background of the California free spirit.

Turns out while the 24-year-old woman was a University of California, Irvine undergrad, she posted several incriminating messages to online newsgroups devoted to illegal drug use. Hastie's messages to the alt.drugs.hard and alt.drugs groups came in 1998 and 1999 and carried her full name, Christa Hilda Hastie. Sent from Hastie's college e-mail addresses, the messages are part of the Usenet archive that has been maintained since 1995 (first by and now by Google).

In a June 1998 posting to the alt.drugs group, Hastie (pictured at left) sent a message with the subject line "I want meth in LA or OC?" Her note asked, "where I can hook up w/ some meth in Los Angeles or Orange County...and how and who do you know to ask about this shit?" She received no responses to that query about methamphetamine, the addictive stimulant. At the time of her posting, Hastie was living near UCI's Irvine campus, which is in Orange County.

In another June 1998 post, this one in response to a question about "alternatives to speed," Hastie offered a recipe featuring Aspirin, Vivarin (an over-the-counter stimulant) and Ephedrine, a prescription weight loss pill. Hastie noted, "that should work ok....hang in there, I understand :-)!"

When an online buddy named Phreex suggested in September 1998 the establishment of a first-ever "National Methamphetamine Week," Hastie replied enthusiastically. "I'll make the web site for this wonderful idea," wrote Hastie, who is an accomplished computer programmer. In a later exchange with Phreex, Hastie offers to send him "some really cute new pics taken with my digital camera." After he jokes that those photos should include "NAKED CHRISTA, JELLO, and METH!," she responded, "Well send those rocks on over my way and I'll send you a thousand pics! That would be enough to make anybody orgasm..."

A January 1999 post to alt.drugs asks for "any good recommendations for getting the most out of your cocaine? I mean, can you take any pills, i.e. Vivarin, to keep your high for longer periods of time?" Hastie also asks for a suggestion as to where she could purchase a "coke bong" near Los Angeles.

Later newsgroup postings by Hastie--via school and work e-mail addresses--involve computer-related matters only. Hastie, who apparently graduated from UCI in June 2000, was once arrested on a misdemeanor charge of "disrupting an officer's abilities to perform his duties," according to her biography on the CBS web site. While in college, she refused to get off her car's hood as it was being towed, the network reported.

Remarkably, Hastie isn't the only new "Survivor" contestant to have sent messages to Usenet drug groups.

Ryan Shoulders, who CBS describes as a 23-year-old "produce clerk" from Tennessee, posted several messages in 1999 and 2000 to the alt.drug.psychedelics newsgroup. In an August 1999 response to a complaint about the difficulty of scoring acid in Atlanta, Shoulders wrote, "Blah blah... Nashville is worse...I think they forgot what acid is here." Shoulders lives in Clarksville, about 45 miles from the state capital.

In a November 1999 message, Shoulders, who has used the online handles TossSalad and Frog Muffin, actually sought advice about sending drugs through the mail. "Is it possible to send gel tabs thru the mail?!," Shoulders asked. "How well does the post office check for things like this? Do they check at all? Should it be sent in a regular envelope wrapped up in something? Or should it be sent in a small package in something like a CD case or something?" The term "gel tab" is often used as shorthand for windowpane acid, which can be extremely powerful.

Shoulders sought "some tripping ideas" in a May 2000 alt.drug.psychedelics posting. Noting that "tripping is fun," Shoulders wrote that, however, "there are a few dead spots everytime our group trips (which is not often because it is very hard to find). Are there any games or activities anyone can suggest to fill in the dead spots where we are sitting around anxiously on the carpet trying to think of something to do?"

Finally, while CBS disclosed Hastie's misdemeanor bust, the network forgot to mention that another "Survivor" contestant was popped last year for drunk driving.

Jon Dalton, 29, was arrested last February by Los Angeles cops for driving under the influence, a misdemeanor. He entered a no contest plea on March 14, 2002 to the DUI count and a charge of driving without insurance. Dalton, who CBS claims recently worked as a "senior art consultant," was sentenced to two days in jail, placed on probation for three years, and ordered to attend an alcohol education program. He also paid fines and fees totaling $1656.

Ryan OprayRyan Opray, 31, was arrested in February 2000 by California cops and charged with vandalizing the lawns of nine homes in his Los Gatos neighborhood. Opray apologized to police for the vandalism, which he referred to as "lawn jobs." According to this police report, Opray told cops that he did the damage with a Ford F-150 pickup truck while driving home (at 3:30 AM) from a night of partying at a Santa Clara club.

Opray pleaded no contest to eight misdemeanor charges and performed community service and paid restitution totaling $938.

CBS spokesperson Colleen Sullivan said that Hastie's April 2000 arrest was included in her bio because the facts of the case were "kinda funny." Hastie pleaded to the charge and was sentenced to a year's probation, five days of community service, and ordered to pay restitution. Sullivan said the network was aware of Dalton's drunk driving case.

As for the Usenet postings by Hastie and Shoulders, Sullivan said that the network would not comment on such "speculation" and refused to say whether CBS was aware of the drug-related messages before being contacted by a TSG reporter. While Sullivan confirmed details of the Hastie and Dalton criminal cases, she repeatedly refused to address the drug messages, since the postings were not "public," as are the details of court cases. "Survivor" finalists are subjected to drug testing, said Sullivan, who added that such a test resulted in the dismissal of one previous "finalist" who tested positive.

Comments (1)

who cares? jesus, just about everyone consumes some sort of drug, the person who wrote this article probably sparked up a fat blunt while writing this. While meth is indeed the sleaziest of the sleazy drugs, does this have anything to do with anything, let alone the contestants ability to compete on survivor? no, it doesn't. I feel bad for these people, just because they're on a game show, they are subjected to all this scrutiny of their past. Damnn, who hasn't experimented with drugs in college, or got hammered & done something stupid? No one. Leave these people alone, just because they we're selected to compete on survivor doesn't mean that they're saints. Anyway, I'm going to go drop some acid and watch survivor naked while eating jello.