What is drugging?
Drugging (or drink spiking) can be malicious with the intent to hurt the victim through injury, unsafe sex, robbery, or sexual assault. Some people also spike people’s drinks for fun as foolish jokes.
Drugging occurs when alcohol and/or another drug is placed in a person’s drink without their knowledge. Alcohol is the most frequently used drug in drink spiking incidents. This can be giving a person a stronger drink by adding alcohol to their non-alcoholic drink, or adding extra to an alcoholic drink. However, a variety of other substances have also been identified.
Why is it a problem?
Often victims won’t report drink spiking incidents because they are worried people won’t believe them, or they think they will be blamed for what happened – especially if they were already drinking or taking drugs.
But, if someone’s drink has been spiked, it’s a crime, regardless of what they were doing at that time.
Drink spiking incidents have always been very under-reported and there are no reliable statistics in Estonia. We have very little knowledge about how often drink spiking occurs and where the hotspots are.
However, this does not mean that the issue is not present. Therefore, it is extremely important to raise drugging related awareness in our society and look out for each other for us to stay safe.
- 4 out of 5 victims are female
- Around half of drink spiking victims are aged under 24
- Of the reported drink spiking incidents, a majority have no associated criminal victimisation, indicating that ‘prank spiking’ may be a common motivation for drink spiking.
- Between 20 and 30 per cent of incidents reported to police involve sexual assault.
- Weaver, Matthew. “ This Article Is More than 10 Months Old Drink-Spiking Is at ‘Epidemic’ Levels in UK, Campaigners Tell MPs.” The Guardian, January 12, 2022. https://www.theguardian.com/society/2022/jan/12/drink-spiking-uk-campaigners-mps-inquiry.
- “Drink Spiking.” Alcohol Think Again. Government of Western Australia, September 8, 2022. https://alcoholthinkagain.com.au/alcohol-your-health/alcohol-and-short-term-harm/drink-spiking/.