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|1. How to report spiking as a witness|
|2. What happens after you report spiking as a witness|
|3. During the investigation|
|4. How to update your spiking report|
|5. Provide information anonymously|
|6. Your rights as a witness|
If you have seen someone spiking other people or you know that someone is spiking people, you can report it as a witness. We’ll record the incident and take action to prevent further spiking cases, if possible.
We would like to know about any spiking incident, no matter how long ago it happened. There is no time limit to report spiking. It doesn’t matter if you can’t remember all the details or are not sure if there’s any evidence.
It is very important to report spiking. If the police don’t know where crimes are happening, they can’t take any action to prevent further incidents or catch the person responsible. In some cases, there may be little or no evidence, but we’d still like you to report spiking to us.
After you report spiking as a witness, we’ll make sure that we’re the right police force to investigate the crime. For example, if you go out in a different town from where you live and see someone spiking. In that case, we’d send the relevant police force your report and they’d investigate.
We’ll look at the information you’ve given us and decide if we can investigate your report further. If we decide that we can’t investigate your report, we’ll contact you to explain why.
We base our decision on four key factors:
If we decide that we can investigate, actions we might take include:
Once we complete our initial investigation, we'll either close the case or continue the investigation. We’ll close the case if, for example, there are no other leads we can follow at that time.
Sometimes we get new information or discover new evidence, in which case we can reopen the investigation and update you.
Whatever happens, your report and the information you share with us is valuable. It helps decide where and when we use police resources to track down and prevent crime.
We’ll assign an investigating officer to you. This officer will contact you during the investigation to answer any questions and update you.
We'll contact you if we need your help again - for example, if we want you to identify a suspect.
If the investigation does lead to a court case, the investigating officer will introduce you to the Witness Case Unit. They’ll guide you through each step of the process.
Even if you don’t want to go to court, you may have to. It depends on how important your evidence is to the trial. If you do have to go to court, the court might send you a witness summons. This means that you have to go to court when the summons tells you to.
If you don’t want to go to court because someone is intimidating you, you should tell us about it. It is a criminal offence to threaten anyone who is helping the police with an investigation.
You may have new information or evidence about an existing witness report. You can update or withdraw your witness statement at any time online or by contacting the investigating officer.
If you withdraw your witness statement, the case may still go to trial. For example, if we are confident that there is enough evidence to prosecute the suspect.
If you want to withdraw your statement because you are nervous about giving evidence in court, tell the investigating officer how you feel. You may not need to give evidence in court, for example if the suspect pleads guilty.
You can report spiking to us as a witness without giving us your name or contact details. But we won’t be able to contact you during our investigation if we have any questions or to update you.
If you prefer to give information about spiking as a witness anonymously to someone other than the police, you can pass this on to the independent crime-fighting charity Crimestoppers.
Information provided anonymously via Crimestoppers is extremely valuable in helping us plan how we police each area.
You can contact them through their website or by calling 0800 555 111.
Witnesses of crime are protected under the Witness Charter. The charter explains the support you can get and how you should be treated.
All witnesses of crime have the right to:
To find out more about how witnesses and victims of crime are treated and other services available, visit the UK government’s website.