Update into reports of possible drink spikings in Northampton
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In recent weeks, Northamptonshire Police has received a number of reports from people who believe their drinks may have been spiked during nights out in Northampton.
Since the start of September a total of 23 reports have been made to the Force by men and women who have suffered a range of ill-effects after drinking alcohol in the town, some requiring medical attention.
In response, officers have launched Operation Kalon to investigate and are repeating their reminder that drink spiking is a crime, as well as advising people of the need to take care of each other on nights out and be mindful of what and how much they are drinking.
Since Covid restrictions lifted in July, the Force has had increased numbers of officers working in town centres as part of Operation Kayak, set up to identify and prevent predatory behaviour in the night-time economy. Further patrols were also carried out during the start of the new university term.
Detective Inspector Liz Basham, of Northamptonshire Police’s CID, said: “We know people are concerned by these reports, but we’d like to reassure everyone that incidents of drink spiking thankfully remain rare and each report is being looked into, in order to establish what has actually taken place.
“Alongside our police licensing colleagues, we’re working closely with affected venues, who are taking a lot of proactive steps in order to protect the welfare of their customers.
“Our officers are regularly working within the night-time economy, alongside trained door and venue staff and street pastors. They are all looking out for the welfare of vulnerable people and also for anyone displaying any signs of potentially predatory behaviour.
“Anyone seeking to take advantage of someone on a night out should think again, because we are ready and waiting to stop you.”
Report non-emergency crime by calling 101 or visiting www.northants.police.uk/RO. In an emergency, always call 999.
Advice for staying safe on a night out
In an ideal world, we wouldn’t need to share this advice with you, but sadly there are people who may look to take advantage of you on a night out, so:
- Be aware of what and how much you are drinking – your tolerance for alcohol varies according to a range of factors, and many people returning to socialising since the reopening of the night-time economy may find their tolerance has lowered
- Always look after your drinks when you’re out. Don’t leave them unattended, don’t take drinks from strangers or pick up drinks at random – you have no way of knowing what’s in them
- Stick with your friends – keep an eye on each other and have a plan for getting home safely
- If you have any concerns about someone’s behaviour or wellbeing, report it immediately to venue staff or to police
- Seek prompt medical help if you suffer any serious and/or adverse effects after drinking on a night out. If you believe any crime may have been committed, report it promptly to police
- Find more advice here.