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Nightclub mystery of jab in the thigh

PUBLISHED: 12:33 06 September 2001 | UPDATED: 10:29 03 March 2010

DETECTIVES in Suffolk are today investigating a nightclub assault where a woman suffered a puncture wound to her thigh. The victim, a 21-year-old from Stowmarket, was dancing with a group of friends at Brannigans nightspot in Ipswich when she felt someone brush against her at around 11.

DETECTIVES in Suffolk are today investigating a nightclub assault where a woman suffered a puncture wound to her thigh.

The victim, a 21-year-old from Stowmarket, was dancing with a group of friends at Brannigans nightspot in Ipswich when she felt someone brush against her at around 11.45pm on Saturday.

She felt a pain in her thigh and thought she had been burnt by a cigarette but thought little more about what had happened until later when she felt discomfort in her leg.

A doctor, who examined her the following day, said there was a small puncture wound but could not say what caused the wound. The doctor believed she was not injected with any substance.

The victim has had blood tests carried out and has been given vaccinations as a precaution.

Detective Sergeant Paul Barber said: "We do not know how this injury occurred, whether it was deliberate of accidental or what instrument was used.

"There has been media coverage recently relating to an e-mail campaign which initiated an 'urban myth' that someone was going around nightclubs injecting members of the public with HIV infected needles.

"As far as police are aware, there has never been a case of anyone deliberately infecting someone with HIV using a needle in this way either locally or nationally.

"While we cannot rule out the possibility that someone is trying to imitate the circumstances described in the media coverage of the urban myth, the injury could easily have been caused accidentally by someone catching the victim with the sharp edge of a handbag or other item.

"This incident has caused the victim a great deal of stress and it is important that we locate this individual as quickly as possible. I would urge anyone with any information relating to this matter to contact police as soon as possible.

"This will be treated as an assault, however, if someone is aware that they accidentally jabbed a young woman in Brannigans on Saturday night, I would appeal to them to contact police in order that we may put the victim's mind at rest."

Anyone with information should contact Ipswich CID on 01473 383100 or call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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