Preston woman taken to A&E after being spiked by injection in Switch nightclub

A young woman has been left 'traumatised' after she was spiked by injection on a night out in Preston at the weekend.

By Matthew Calderbank
Monday, 25th October 2021, 3:27 pm
Updated Tuesday, 26th October 2021, 10:31 am

Georgia Hills, 18, says she 'suddenly blacked out' whilst partying with friends in Switch nightclub on Saturday (October 23). She was taken to A&E at Royal Preston Hospital where a puncture wound was found in her leg, surrounded by bruising.

Medics confirmed it was the result of a needle that has been jabbed into her muscle. Georgia is now waiting for blood test results to discover what type of drug was injected into her body.

Read More

Read More
Lancashire councillors hear shocking stories of 'everyday' sexual harassment and...

Sign up to our daily newsletter

Georgia Hills, 18, from Preston, says she 'suddenly blacked out'whilst partying with friendsin Switch nightclub on Saturday (October 23). She was taken to A&E at Royal Preston Hospital where a needle puncture wound was found in her leg, surrounded by bruising. Blood tests revealed that she had been spiked with a date-rape drug.

Speaking to the Post, Georgia said medics at the hospital were aware of two other women who had reportedly been spiked by injection at Switch nightclub that same night.

Lancashire Police said is aware of the incident and an investigation is under way.

What happened to Georgia?

Georgia, who attends university in Liverpool, was enjoying a night out with friends in Preston after returning to her hometown for the half-term break.

A&E medics at Royal Preston Hospital confirmedthe bruising was the result of a needle that has been jabbed into her leg

On Saturday night (October 24), Georgia and her mates visited the Switch 'superclub' in Market Street where she had a couple of drinks, but "nowhere near enough to get drunk".

Her night then took a sinister turn when she began feeling 'strange', 'dizzy' and 'out of it'.

"My friends were really shocked, but they thought I was just really drunk at that point," she said.

"I hadn't drank much at all, nowhere near enough to get me anywhere near that state. And the fact that I don’t remember anything is really scary. I was completely out of it.

"The police have reviewed CCTV from the club and they say a man was seen lingering around me, but I don't remember a thing.

"When I got back to my mates, they were really worried about me. I was all over the place and not like myself at all.

"They shone a phone in my eyes and they were shocked at how dilated they were. They said my pupils were really, really small and red. Like I was off my head on drugs.

"When I got home, my mum knew something wasn't right. She said I wasn't making sense and I was apparently telling her I had just got a taxi home from Liverpool.

"I didn't know where I was or what was happening. I was completely confused. Nothing made sense and I had lost my memory completely."

The next morning, Georgia was still in the grip of the drug and was unable to make sense of what had happened to her the night before.

She began to suspect she had been spiked and then mum Tammily noticed bruising on one of her legs.

"My mum spotted the bruise and when she looked closer she found a pinprick. It is really sore and feels like it has gone deep inside my muscle.

"She took me to A&E and the doctors said I'd been jabbed with a needle of some sort. They said they'd seen two other girls that day with the same symptoms.

"They took five tubes of blood and are running tests to find out what type of drug was used.

"I can't believe it happened to me. It's disgusting and scary and I'm traumatised by what's happened and what could have happened."

She added that she was scared that she may have also contracted a disease from a dirty needle.

She said: "It's really violating and disgusting because they could have given me Hepatitis or anything by jabbing me with it. It's a horrible feeling."

Georgia has bravely shared her story and says she wants to encourage others who might have experienced something similar to report their concerns to police.

She said: "I want to warn others. There might be girls who were spiked that night and don't even realise. They might think they just had too much to drink and feel embarrassed.

"But I urge them to check for needle marks and report anything suspicious to police so they can properly investigate.

"I'd also like to warn women to always be on guard and aware of what's happening around them in clubs and pubs.

"It's horrific to think there are people out there who would do things like this. I've heard of this happening in Liverpool where I go to university, but I've never known anyone to be spiked with a needle in Preston."

Georgia says she wants to see clubs checking people upon entry to prevent date-rape drugs from being smuggled inside.

"I really think they need to start checking everyone thoroughly before they are allowed into clubs. Random checks are not enough stop this happening again."

What did Switch nightclub say?

The Post asked Switch for a comment on what happened to Georgia, but the club has yet to respond.

However, today (Monday, October 25), Switch did publish a post on Facebook addressing concerns over drink spiking, without referring to the alleged incidents inside the club over the weekend.

It said: "We are very aware of the recent increase of reports surrounding drink spiking across the UK.

"We want to inform everyone of our existing and from this weekend new policies here at Switch.

"Customer safety is paramount to us, and we pride ourselves on having the least amount of police incidents reports cases, although being the busiest venue in Preston."

It said the following measures are to be introduced

"Searching - We have carried out random searching on entry to the venue since we opened in 2017. Door Supervisors - Are located across the venue and quickly identified in high visual jackets if customers require help or assistance.

"Ask Angela - We promote and display ask Angela signage and information across the venue, allowing customers in need of help to ask for Angela. All staff are also trained for Ask Angela.

"First Aid - We have a dedicated first aid room and first aiders on site every night that we are open.

"Signage - Getting to know the signs of spiking is essential; we have increased signage in the venue to help spot the signs of drinks spiking.

"Cup covers - This week, we are introducing a new safety measure inside the venue; once you have purchased your drink, you can take it to our customer service desk at reception and have the CUP COVERED for FREE. We urge everyone to take this up."