The Utica Police Department has created a new Community Outreach Team.

Utica Mayor Robert Palmieri and UPD Chief Mark Williams made the announcement on Monday.

Williams says the mission of the team is to help bridge the gap between Utica Police and the community by developing, broadening, fostering and strengthening partnerships with a wide variety of community leaders, neighborhood watch groups, civic groups, schools, faith based groups, businesses and public service agencies throughout the City.

Williams says it's an expansion of the community outreach efforts that have already been implemented. He says they specifically want to improve their relationships with inner-city youth, whose contact with police is usually in a negative fashion.

Palmieri says it's another proactive step the city is taking to strengthen the bonds between our community and law enforcement.

The announcement of the Community Outreach Team came at the UPD's second "Coffee with a Cop" event at the Oneida Square Dunkin' Donuts.

Jim Rondenelli, WIBX
Jim Rondenelli, WIBX

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