WOODBURY - Nassau and Suffolk counties have announced a new task force to fight the heroin epidemic on Long Island.
Each county says it will dedicate four narcotic detectives and a detective supervisor to the force. In addition, an intelligence analyst will work with the task force.
Officials say the group will work full time, cracking down on dealers and traffickers.
"It's not in one school district, it's in every school district. It's in every community," says Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone.
According to statistics released by the Nassau County Medical Examiner's Office, Nassau police made 709 heroin arrests and 417 opiate arrests in 2015. A total of 245 Nassau residents experienced heroin overdoses in 2015 – 58 of them were fatal.
According to the Suffolk County Police Department, there were 1,898 heroin arrests in 2015 and a total of 103 fatal overdoses.
The announcement took place during the Nassau County Educational Heroin Summit and Rally at the Coral House in Baldwin. It was attended by Bellone, Nassau Executive Ed Mangano, Acting Nassau Police Commissioner Thomas Krumpter and Suffolk Police Commissioner Tim Sini.