NORTHPORT, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — Officers from the Northport Village Police Department have been making more and more arrests for heroin possession and for driving while impaired by drugs.

Lt. William Ricca told WCBS 880’s Sophia Hall that in the past year heroin busts have doubled, while arrests for driving while high on drugs have tripled.

“One of the reasons we’ve seen a lot of heroin over the last few years is that it’s cheaper than other drugs such as cocaine,” Ricca said. “And initally, the stigma of heroin use and needles isn’t there because they can ingest it or they can snort it.”

Drug arrests are nine times higher than they were in 2011, Ricca added.

The lieutenant said the Police Department is taking part in a program designed to help young people arrested for drug use get on the right track.

“What they do is, once they’re in the program, they have to stay clean. They have to attend school. If they’re out of school, they have to have a job or try to get a job,” Ricca said. “And they get support from the counselors at the drug court.”

Northport police also have been administering Naloxone, also known as Narcan, which reverses the effects of a heroin overdose.

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