Police confirm 23 reports of believed drink spiking in nine Northampton venues since start of September

The force has now launched an operation to investigate the issue

Wednesday, 6th October 2021, 3:57 pm
Updated Wednesday, 6th October 2021, 3:58 pm
Police have confirmed 23 reports of drinks being spiked in town centre nightspots

Detectives have confirmed more reports from people who believe their drinks may have been spiked during nights out in Northampton.

A Northamptonshire Police spokesman confirmed on Wednesday (October 6) they are now investigating a total of 23 cases where men and women who have suffered a range of ill-effects after drinking alcohol in the town, some requiring medical attention.

These incidents have been reported at least nine different venues across the town.

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Officers have now launched Operation Kalon to investigate and are repeating their reminder that drink spiking is a crime.

They are also 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.

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.

"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.”

Police initially confirmed six incidents where people believed their drinks had been spiked during the first three weeks of September. In these initial reports, the force named two venues. Since then venues have not been named, but a force spokesperson has confirmed the incidents have been reported in at least nine venues.

The number has steadily risen with four more incidents reported last weekend.

It is understood that many of cases being investigated are waiting on toxicology reports to be processed.

Since Covid restrictions lifted in July, the force has had increased numbers of officers working in town centres as part of Operation Kayak.

That was 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 as hundreds of students moved into the town.

Following the first spiking issues, one town centre club announced it had stepped up security measures by introducing of drug sniffer dogs on the door and lid devices to protect drinks.