Several reports of drinks being spiked in Derry city centre bars - Foyle MLA
A Derry MLA is to meet with police after her office received several reports of drinks being spiked in the city centre.
SDLP Foyle MLA Sinead McLaughlin said she was deeply worried and urged everyone to be on the alert to potential incidents.
The warning comes as police confirmed today a teenager who reported she had been spiked was taken from Foyle Street to hospital on Saturday.
Police have urged anyone who thinks they may have been a victim of drink spiking to contact them on 101.
Sinead McLaughlin said: “My office has received allegations of several incidents of drinks being spiked in Derry city centre bars. This is extremely concerning and this must be taken very seriously. I am meeting the PSNI on Friday this week, where I will be raising the issue and asking the police for an update on their enquiries.
“It is also very worrying to hear reports from England that there have been incidents where women have been injected with drugs, by being jagged in the back of the neck or leg.
“Bars and their staff must take this very seriously. Bouncers and bar staff need to be aware of these risks, keep an eye for this happening and ensure that any person who has been affected in this way is taken to a place of safety with someone they can trust. If any customers in a bar are aware of drinks being spiked, they need to warn the victim and intervene as best they can.”
Ms McLaughlin said she has asked the Minister for Justice Naomi Long to review legislation, to consider whether protection for women is adequate and can be strengthened.
“I have also asked her whether more can be done in terms of training and regulation of bouncers, to ensure they know how to protect customers. Bars also need to consider their use of cctv and the collection and retention of evidence.
“But it is important to stress that penalties for these acts of criminality are already severe, with drug spiking potentially leading to a ten year prison term and serious sexual assault facilitated by the use of drugs potentially leading to a life sentence.”