Spiked Drinks

Drink Spiking Reported in Arlington; Police Share Safety Tips

Here is how to stay safe while enjoying a night out.

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Six female victims reported possible drink spiking after visiting various nightlife establishments in Clarendon and Crystal City in October, Arlington County police said.

The victims believe their drinks may have been tampered with after experiencing loss of consciousness and memory loss. According to the Office of Women's Health, signs of a drugged beverage include slurred speech, dizziness, and having trouble moving or controlling muscles.

All the incidents occurred on weekends.

“Before we had no nightlife, then we had social distancing, and now as we get back into normal routines it’s important to remember that these things unfortunately do happen,” said Ashley Savage of Arlington police.

Police did not name the establishments.

As cases rise in the area, the Arlington police offered these safety tips to safeguard your drink and enjoy a night out:

  • Never leave your drink unattended
  • Avoid sharing drinks with others
  • Do not accept drinks from strangers
  • If someone you do not know offers you a drink and you accept, go to the bar with them and have the drink poured and served directly to you
  • If you did not see your drink poured, do not drink it
  • Keep an eye on your friends and their drinks

If you believe your drink may be spiked or observe an individual spiking someone else’s drink, immediately call 911.

“We absolutely want to hear from you,” Savage said. “We take these cases very seriously. This information allows to track any possible trends that we see in our community. So, it’s incredibly important that you report information to law enforcement.”

Drink spiking is illegal in Virginia. Crisis resources are available 24/7 for those who suspect drink spiking or drug-assisted sexual assault:

  • Arlington County Police, 703-558-2222 or 9-1-1 in an emergency
  • Doorways Dating/Domestic/Sexual Violence Hotline, 703-237-0881
  • Inova Forensic Assessment and Consultation Team (Forensic Exams), 703-776-4001 (ask to page a FACT Nurse)
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