When the Utica Police Department's Facebook page was taken down last week, citing "criticism by local and state politicians," the public quickly rose to arms.

On Wednesday night, the page was relaunched for a short time using a different series of settings to remove commentary. But, in the 44 minutes it was active the page received nearly 100 comments from the public, most of which were complimentary.

"The best evidence you can have about the success of our Facebook page is not from talking to me," Williams said. "Talk to the public out there, and I'm sure that the overwhelming majority would tell you they miss our site."

Williams says its launch in 2010, the page has played a vital role in connecting the public with the police force, and has been influential in solving cases.

"We've got it documented that we've solved 47 cases, many of those felonies, through the help of our Facebook fans from either video or photographs," Utica Police Chief Mark Williams said.

The chief also says the page was recognized by the International Association of Chiefs of Police as the number one department in the nation on Facebook, based on the number of likes for the city's size.

A recent release issued by the City of Utica has stated that the Utica Police Deparment will be returning to social media, but will be using a different platform.

It is expected that the new platform will be fully functional by Friday, June 7th.

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