Almost 200 drink spiking incidents have been reported to police forces across the UK in September and October, the National Police Chiefs’ Council (NPCC) said.
The NPCC said there have been 198 confirmed reports of drink spiking in September and October across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, plus 24 reports of some form of injection.
An earlier figure of 140 confirmed reports was revised after more data was received.
The number included both men and women, although the policing body said the majority of cases involved young women. Alleged offences have taken place at licensed premises and at private parties.
The 198 figure is based on data received from 40 police forces, and the NPCC said it is still to receive data from five forces, which it expects over the weekend. It said 58 of the 198 reports of drink spiking were made to the Metropolitan police.
There has been a surge in concern about drink spiking following a spate of social media reports from women who believe they may have been drugged via injection.
This criminal behaviour is more prevalent as we lead up to Christmas with office parties and other celebrations.
If you think your drink has been spiked, stop drinking it. Don’t take another sip out of curiosity or to ‘double check’. You should tell someone who you trust immediately and go to a safe place. The longer you wait, the harder it can become to communicate what has happened. If you find that you are alone, find someone in authority to help you – for example, a member of staff at the club or restaurant you are in.
- Buying your own drinks.
- Watching the bartender prepare your drinks.
- Buying bottles, instead of glasses.
- Keeping your thumb over the opening or buying a cap.
- Not leaving your drink unattended.
- Partying safely with people you know.
- Asking a trusted friend to keep hold of your drink if you absolutely have to leave it.
- Not accepting drinks from strangers.
- Buying another drink if you are in any doubt at all.