18-year-old student tested for hepatitis B, syphilis and HIV after being ‘injected’ in line at bar
A young student who was queuing for a nightclub recounted being stung by an injection in his back.
And she recounted her trauma of having to be tested for hepatitis B, syphilis and HIV as a result of the terrifying ordeal.
The 18-year-old, who asked not to be named, waited in a long line to enter the Baa Bar on Fleet Street in Liverpool city center shortly after midnight on October 19, when she suddenly felt bad.
As she left the queue and stood to the side to be sick, the University of Liverpool freshman said she lost the use of her legs.
She was brought back halfway by her friend before they got into a cab together, but it wasn’t until the next morning that she realized what had happened.
The woman told Liverpool ECHO: “We were standing in line outside and all of a sudden I was like ‘I’m going to be sick.’ I went to the side and started throwing up.
“My friend told me that I was collapsing, I couldn’t use my legs, I couldn’t really speak.
“I remember throwing up and I remember my friend picking me up and bringing me home.
“The next day I felt something weird behind my back and asked my roommate to look.”
In one photo, seen by ECHO, a red mark can be seen on the woman’s back, which she suspects is where she was injected.
She said: “It was very scary, I was crying on the phone with my mom.”
The 18-year-old called her doctor that morning and was told to go straight to A&E.
She has since been referred for blood tests at Royal Liverpool Hospital, including testing for hepatitis B, syphilis and HIV.
Merseyside Police said an investigation was underway and CCTV, witness and medical investigations were ongoing.
A spokesperson for Baa Bar said the location was aware of the incident and provided footage to police to assist with their investigation.
Before going out that night, the woman said she shared a bottle of vodka with her friend and they both “drank the exact same amount of drinks”.
The woman said she had been nowhere else in the city center that night and her back was exposed in the outfit she was wearing.
The woman added: “There were so many people [in the queue], we were talking to everyone – the people in front and behind.
“I must have been injected. There’s no way I would have acted like this unless I was drugged.
“I’ve never felt this before. I just couldn’t use my legs. I collapsed, my head fell.
“I kept wanting to close my eyes and pass out, but my friends wouldn’t let me.”
A spokesperson for Merseyside Police said: ‘We are investigating after an 18-year-old woman reported that she had been injected in the back in Liverpool city center.
“Just after midnight on Tuesday October 19, the woman said she was standing in line outside a bar on Wood Street in Liverpool city center when she started to feel sore and her legs gave way. went home with a friend in a taxi.
“The woman reported that she had a red mark on her back.
“An investigation is underway and video surveillance, witness and medical investigations are underway.
“Anyone with information is requested to contact DM @MerPolCC or @CrimestoppersUK on 0800 555 111 quoting the reference 21000731288.”
A spokesperson for Baa Bar said, “We take the growing threat of spikes and people being injected across the city very seriously.
“Baa Bar was one of the first bars to adapt a no search and no entry policy to reassure our customers and this was received extremely positively.
“We have a wellness manager deployed on each shift whose primary focus is to support all customers in need and to observe and monitor any unusual activity with our door team.
“The entire team has been contacted and trained in sensitizing vulnerable guests and suspicious activity.
“We have met with the police and are working alongside them and other places in town to come up with a plan to try and deter potential culprits, and what the process is if we find potential culprits on our premises.
“The fact that these alleged increases appear to be targeting the student body is a serious concern and we welcome working with universities to educate and support their students.
“We are aware of the incident last Tuesday evening when the person in question contacted us.
“The line was particularly long that evening and the alleged incident happened quite far down the street, but we have provided footage to the police to aid their investigation.
“These incidents seem to be happening all over the UK and we hope those in them will be found and arrested and if anyone knows who is doing it they will come forward to make our cities safer again.”
This follows reports of a spate of peak incidents across the UK when nightclubs reopen.
And women have been urged to remain vigilant as clubs reopen in Ireland as well.
If you think you have been doped, you should take the following advice:
Tell someone you trust
Since you cannot be sure how your body will react to an unknown substance, you will need help from someone you trust.
It could be :
A friend or relative
The manager of the place where you are
A health professional
Keep the drink
If you still have some of the fortified drink, save it if possible. It could be used as evidence. Give it to someone you trust until it can be given to the Gardaí.
If you are not feeling well
Have a friend drive you to the emergency room (ER) if you have symptoms such as:
Hallucinations (seeing or hearing things that are not there)
When you get to the emergency room, you or your friend should tell the medical staff that you think your drink has been spiked.
If you don’t have severe symptoms
If you think your drink has been fortified but you are not having any serious symptoms, contact Gardaí. Reporting the incident as early as possible will help catch the offender.
Contact the Gardaí
If you need immediate medical attention, go to the emergency room before contacting the Gardaí. Call 999 or 112 if you need urgent help.
Contact the Gardaí as soon as possible. You will need to have your blood or urine tested to confirm that your drink has been fortified. This test will help the Gardaí investigate the crime.
Blood or urine test
Following a doping incident, blood or urine samples should be taken as soon as possible.
Most drugs leave the body 12 to 72 hours after they are taken. It is therefore important that a blood or urine sample be tested as soon as possible.
For example, gamma-hydroxybutyrate (GHB) will be:
Undetectable in your blood within 6 to 8 hours
Undetectable in your urine within 12 to 18 hours
Ask someone you trust to take you home after:
You went to the emergency room
The Gardaí have been contacted
A blood or urine sample has been taken
When you get home, ask that someone you trust to stay with you until the medication has completely left your body. It will probably be the next day. This is in case the symptoms get worse and you are unable to take care of yourself.