Spiking by injection: 274 incidents reported to police forces across the UK in two months

Almost 300 injection spiking incidents have been reported to local police forces up and down the UK

Spiking by injection carries the extra threat posed by dirty needles, like HIV/AIDS and Hepatitis B and C (Photo: Shutterstock)

There have been almost 300 spiking by needle reports in the UK since September, according to the National Police Chiefs’ Council (NPCC), amid a wave of concern among clubbers about the new form of assault.

The NPCC asked police forces across the UK to tally up how many incidents involving  ‘some form of injection’ have been reported to officers

Sign up to our NationalWorld Today newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

A shocking 274 reports of offences involving a needle were reported between September and 8 November.

The number in question relates to reported incidents, which means they may not have been confirmed yet by the police and officially recorded as crimes.

NationalWorld has confirmed no other cases have been reported to the NPCC after 8 November.

It comes as NationalWorld has launched an exclusive investigation into spiking offences between 2016-2020, which will be published later this week.

Concerns over possible needle spiking were first raised in October, although opinion is divided on how likely it is that needles are being widely used in place of drink spiking.

An increase in such reports has led campaigners to organise boycotts of nightclubs, as they press for tighter safety measures.

Some spiking victims have reported feeling pinches on their arms in clubs and later developing bruises, prompting fears they had been assaulted with needles.

National Police Chiefs’ Council lead for drugs, Deputy Chief Constable Jason Harwin, said police forces are investigating incidents of needle spiking and continue to work with pubs and clubs to increase searches and guidance to staff.

“We are continuing to gather responses from all forces across the UK in relation to incidents involving some form of injection, with a total of 274 reports confirmed from the start of September into November,” he said.

“We will continue to analyse the reports and work with police forces, plus other law enforcement partners including the National Crime Agency (NCA) and Regional Organised Crime Units (ROCUs), as investigations develop to build a problem profile and determine any further action by police or venues.

“We would encourage anyone who believes they have been a victim or witness to spiking, in any form, to contact their local police force. Any reports of spiking will be investigated and taken seriously.

“You should try and report it to the police as quickly as possible to help officers carry out tests and gather the best evidence.”

It comes as seven women in Doncaster have said they were the victims of ‘needle spiking’ on 13 November.

NationalWorld’s sister paper, The Doncaster Free Press, reported some of the women  who say they have been targeted said they attended hospital over fears of HIV and hepatitis from potentially contaminated and shared needles.

A message from the editor:

Thank you for reading. NationalWorld is a new national news brand, produced by a team of journalists, editors, video producers and designers who live and work across the UK. Find out more about who’s who in the team, and our editorial values. We want to start a community among our readers, so please follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, and keep the conversation going. You can also sign up to our newsletters and get a curated selection of our best reads to your inbox every day.