NIAGARA FALLS – Niagara Regional Police have issued a public advisory in the wake of an alleged sexual assault at a Niagara Falls hotel.
On Sunday, Jan. 13 around 4 p.m., police were called to an unnamed hotel on Fallsview Blvd., after receiving a report of a 29-year-old missing woman.
The woman was eventually located inside the hotel around 11 a.m.
Investigators say the woman had been escorted into a room within the Hotel where she was allegedly drugged and sexually assaulted by a male.
Following further investigation, police arrested and charged an Innisfil, Ont. man with sexual assault.
Five Toronto-area men were also taken into custody, but no charges have yet been laid.
Police are reminding the public that caution “should be used when venturing out into the world of high-end dance/ nightclubs.”
“The ‘clubbing scene’ has long been recognized as an opportunity to employ the use of certain drugs or substances that are easily slipped into beverages and quickly cause unexpected episodes of extreme intoxication. These episodes leave the unsuspecting victims exceptionally vulnerable to crimes of violence and a number of these occurrences have taken place within the Niagara Region over the past several years,” police said in a statement issued Saturday.
The Niagara Region Sexual Assault Centre (CARSA), the Sexual Assault/ Domestic Violence – Treatment Program of the Niagara Health Systems and the Niagara Regional Police Service agree that the public can take a number of steps to prevent drug facilitated sexual assaults and offer the following suggestions;
• Never leave a drink unattended;
• Ensure you have transportation to and from the place you are attend so you do not have to rely on new-found friends to provide you with a ride;
• Whenever possible, observe your requested drink as it is poured and transported to you;
• Never accept a drink from a person who you do not know and trust;
• Always be vigilant and aware of your surroundings in clubs;
• Attend these locations with persons whom you trust and you know will ensure your welfare is protected;
• Do not leave your friends alone in the company of strangers;
• Be alert to sudden and unexplained episodes of intoxication that are out of character for friends;
• Be alert to the uncharacteristic behavior of friends;
• Be alert to people around you who appear to show up during times where rapid intoxication has occurred. As well, be alert to those people who offer assistance or seek to socialize with anyone who has become overtly intoxicated; • When in doubt ask for the assistance of emergency services personnel, such as police or EMS, and;
• Do not rely solely on the security staff of these premises to ensure your safety.