Women are reporting being spiked with needles in nightclubs
21 October 2021, 20:10
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"I touched the part where I was in the most pain and I found a pinprick. I had been spiked."
A woman has reportedly been spiked by a needle during a night out in Nottingham.
On Monday (Oct 19), student Zara Owen, 19, went out with friends at Nottingham's Pryzm nightclub. In a now-viral Twitter post, Zara describes having eaten before her evening out and that she had less than she would usually to drink. However, all she remembers is entering the nightclub through a metal detector, and then going to the bar, but then she doesn't remember much of what happened after that.
"I woke up the next morning in my bed with almost zero recollection from that night. I remember doing into said club and getting my charger at home," Zara recounted.
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Although Zara has no recollection of the evening, her friends informed her that she wandered into a chicken shop alone. Luckily, her housemate was there to call her an Uber home.
Upon waking up, Zara says she noticed a "sharp agonising" pain in her leg which caused her to walk with a limp, but she thought she had just pulled a muscle. She then headed to the hospital with her mother to get medical attention but after waiting for more than eight hours, she decided to head home.
She later started further examining her leg herself, and that's when she discovered something sinister. "The next morning I felt my leg and examined it to a further extent as I didn’t get any help medically. I touched the part where I was in the most pain and I found a pinprick. I had been spiked," Zara added.
Thankfully, Zara, who was wearing jeans on the night of the incident, didn't suffer any adverse side effects from the spiking. She now wants to raise awareness by sharing her story.
i got spiked monday night, please read and share, and mostly keep safe <3 pic.twitter.com/O8UZalkAZc— zara owen (@zaraowenx) October 14, 2021
A spokesperson for Pryzm nightclub has now released a statement to Tyla, urging club-goers in trouble to contact both the club and the police. "We take all allegations of this nature seriously. The safety and welfare of our guests is our number one priority and we do everything we can to create a safe and fun night out," the statement read.
"We urge anyone who sees suspicious behaviour, or suspects they have been a victim of spiking, to seek assistance immediately from a member of staff or security, who are trained to help and who also have the support of our onsite medic. We would also encourage them to contact police, so that any allegation can be properly investigated."
Superintendent of Nottinghamshire Police, Kathryn Craner, also told the publication: "We are currently investigating reports of individuals suspecting that their drinks have been spiked. Linked to this a small number of victims have said that they may have felt a scratching sensation as if someone may have spiked them physically. Consequently, we are actively investigating all these reports.
"We are treating all of these incidents very seriously and are working with licensed premises and our partner agencies including the University of Nottingham, Nottingham Trent University, Nottingham City Council and East Midlands Ambulance Service in undertaking thorough investigations.
"We have a dedicated group of officers currently carrying out CCTV enquiries at various venues where we have received such reports. Our enquiries into these incidents are ongoing but we understand people may be concerned about incidents like this and want to reassure the public we are working incredibly hard to investigate."
Sadly, Zara's story isn't an isolated incident. The Night Time Industry Association (NTIA) told BBC that they had seen a rise in drink-spiking throughout the UK over recent weeks. Multiple women have reported having recently been spiked by injection. West Yorkshire Police are currently investigating one case of spiking by injection reported in Leeds city centre on 13 October.
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