What you need to know about drink spiking

The Avon and Somerset constabulary are working closely with Bristol’s night time economy to tackle drink spiking in venues

The Avon and Somerset constabulary are working closely with Bristol’s night time economy to tackle drink spiking in venues. We want to ensure that everyone knows how to correctly support a victim of drink spiking and the way to report it. We also want to be clear that we will not tolerate drink spiking. Individuals who are going out intending to behave in this way will be found and will be stopped.

What is drink spiking?

Drink spiking refers to the act of adding drugs to people’s drinks to try and control their behaviours. A person’s drink can be spiked to increase vulnerability for a variety of reasons, including sexual assault, robbery or an attempted joke.

Drink spiking can include slipping drugs into an alcoholic drink, as well as putting alcohol into a non-alcoholic drink and/or adding extra alcohol to an already alcoholic drink. Drink spiking is illegal and carries a sentence of up to ten years in prison. If a robbery, sexual assault or other criminal behaviour has taken place, the sentence will be even longer.

What are the signs of drink spiking?

If you think your drink, or someone you are out with has had their drink spiked, there are a range of things to look out for including:

  • Confusion
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Hallucinations
  • Disorientation
  • Loss of ability to communicate properly
  • Paranoia
  • Poor coordination
  • Unconsciousness

What should you do if you think your drink has been spiked?

  • Tell the people you’re with, make sure you’re with someone you trust and that you are somewhere where you feel safe away from crowds
  • Alert a member of staff at the pub, club, location you are at.
  • If you feel unwell you should seek medical attention immediately and tell them that you believe your drink has been spiked.
  • Report it to the police or a medical professional as soon as possible. Drugs can leave the body in as little as 12 hours after consumption so it’s important you receive help and get tested quickly.
  • Secure any claimed drink, container and or residue.
  • Report to the police as soon as possible by calling 101. Dial 999 in an emergency.

 

What should you do if someone you are with thinks their drink has been spiked?

  • Listen to them, provide support and avoid any judgement. Always believe what the person is telling you.
  • Help the individual to a place where they feel safe, away from crowds. Drink spiking is scary and the person needs to be reassured they’re safe.
  • If they feel unwell you should seek medical attention immediately. If you suspect spiking inform the medical staff that you believe their drink has been spiked.
  • Drugs can leave the body in as little as 12 hours after consumption so it’s important they receive help and get tested quickly.
  • Don’t let the person try to go home by themselves. Make sure they’re with someone they know and trust.
  • Secure any claimed drink, container and or residue.
  • Report the incident to the police as soon as possible by calling 101. Dial 999 in an emergency.
  • Alert a member of staff at the venue you are at as soon as possible.

If you’re thinking of spiking someone’s drink, you should know -

Drink spiking is illegal and carries a sentence of up to ten years in prison. If a robbery, sexual assault or other criminal behaviour has taken place, the sentence will be even longer.

A criminal offence may also affect a person’s ability to obtain a visa, travel abroad or apply for a particular job.

Police officers are out and about and are on the lookout for individuals who may be intending to spike someone’s drink and/or cause them harm. They will not tolerate this kind of behaviour.

The Avon and Somerset constabulary are working with pubs, clubs and ‘night-time’ economy venues to tighten our grip on this type of behaviour. Staff are looking out for the signs and will immediately contact us if they suspect someone is spiking drinks. They will act swiftly and use CCTV, a network of trained officers and innovative techniques to collect evidence and track down offenders.