Westside: clubbers should be reassured at ‘very low’ drink spiking case numbers

Nightclubbers on Birmingham’s ‘golden mile’ should be reassured by recent police statistics which reveal very low cases of drink spiking, according to Westside BID.

The message comes in response to the latest statistics which show that hardly any reported instances end up being substantiated when investigated by officers.

But the BID urged “vigilance” and said that clubbers who suspected criminality should always contact police and that all potential cases would be urgently looked into.

Mike Olley, general manager at Westside BID, said: “While everyone is rightly concerned about reports of drinks being spiked or people injected with needles in bars and clubs, it is reassuring to hear that the police have not actually substantiated many at all.

“When the police findings are looked into, many of the spiking claims turn out to be unproven, while some people either withdraw their claims or are unwilling to be tested, and some also admitted taking drugs.

“What we don’t want to see happening is people who may have had too much to drink then claim they have been spiked for fear of embarrassment at their state.

“But the safety of visitors to Westside is paramount, so we want to reassure our guests that the BID takes any claim of needles or spiked drinks very seriously and they should always be reported.”

He added that the BID, its venues, street wardens and police were all willing to take any action needed.

West Midlands Police said they have investigated 24 reports of people being spiked with drugs between November 10 and 14, with 15 of the reports from Birmingham.

During the same period officers used new rapid multi-drug test kits on 22 occasions.

Police reported that, of these, 12 tests proved to be negative while one was carried out in hospital and the result was not yet known.

A further four people tested positive for THC – a chemical found in cannabis – while two tested positive for cocaine.

Five of the six people were said to have admitted they had taken drugs, but no further action was taken.

Police said there were also three alleged needle attacks, all in Birmingham, but none of the people tested positive for drugs.

In addition to the 22 tests carried out, 12 people declined to give a sample and one person was unable to provide a sample. Police have asked people to report spiking via Live Chat on their website www.west-midlands.police.uk or dial 999 in an emergency.

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