In an effort to combat the opioid addiction crisis in Utica and Oneida County, the Utica Police Department is bringing the ANGEL Program to central New York.

Chief Mark Williams says the program, which was started by the Gloucester, Massachusetts Police Department,  focuses on helping addicts with recovery and not just arresting them.

Williams says anyone who comes to the police station seeking help will be screened by one of the "Angels" and hopefully, that person will be put into rehab.

Williams says the UPD is currently investigating an average of one to three opioid-related deaths a month.

Partner agencies in the ANGEL Program include Insight House, the Center for Family Life and Recovery, the Rescue Mission of Utica's Addictions Crisis Center, Milestones and the McPike Addiction Treatment Center.