‘Many who turn up at hospital claiming they’ve been spiked have not been’ says Doncaster police chief

Spiking is ‘not a significant issue’ in Doncaster and many who turn up at hospital claiming they’ve been spiked have not been, a senior police chief has said.

By George Torr, Local Democracy Reporter
Friday, 25th February 2022, 5:46 pm

Doncaster Superintendent Neil Thomas from South Yorkshire Police made the comments at a recent crime panel attended by councillors at Civic Office.

Superintendent Thomas was asked about the prevalence of spiking in clubs and bars around Doncaster following nearly 150 reports of spiking by injection on nights out in Nottingham in October 2021.

The report was picked up by the national media and caused concerns it was happening elsewhere.

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Superintendent Neil Thomas said there needed to be a differentiation between needle spiking and the longer-term issue of drink spiking and said the former was ‘very, very low’.

The police said there needed to be a differentiation between needle spiking and the longer-term issue of drink spiking and said the former was ‘very, very low’.

He said SYP had invested in ‘thousands and thousands’ of bottle stops over Christmas and issued them to pubs and clubs across Doncaster.

Superintendent Thomas said: “This was a national agenda and it started in Nottingham when the first cases were reported and that got national coverage and we became aware of this very quickly.

“We get a daily update on the number of spiking offences that take place and the actual number in Doncaster is very very low.

“Whilst it gets a lot of media coverage because it’s concerning a trend appearing nationwide, the numbers here in Doncaster are incredibly low.

“Some will say that they know people who have reported spiking but those people who have been taken to hospital and dealt with the underlying factor have found to be not an offence of spiking.

“That’s not to say it doesn’t occur but the numbers are incredibly low. Because it’s an emotive subject it picks up that impetus that it’s here in Doncaster and it’s happening a lot – I can reassure you that the numbers are incredibly low.

“We’re alive to it but we don’t see it as a significant issue. What we term spiking at the moment is someone has a needle injected into them, this is what the current issue is but we’ve always talked about spiking putting something in a drink.

“The needle spiking is where I’m saying there are literally very few of those.”