Fox News 25
January 11, 2017

The front lines to battle drug addiction has gotten more aggressive in Cambridge, with police adding a new technique to connect people to help.

For one recovering heroin addict, who asked not to be identified, there have been ups and downs over the years. He lost custody of his kids at one point. And when he overdosed, it always had the same ending.

“I’ve overdosed like five or seven times,” said he said.

He would receive narcan, be released from the ER and then go out to look for his next fix.

“Trying to go get high again (laugh) because when you get narcanned, it completely takes your high,” he said.

It was a cycle many get stuck in, and Cambridge police realized that it wasn’t working.

“If you’re just handed a piece of paper, with some information and you’re leaving it up to the individual to seek out these resources. That’s very tough,” said Det Sgt Louis Cherubino.

When the recovering addict overdosed recently, he opened his eyes to a police detective standing there, but the detective was not there to arrest him, but to put their department-wide plan into action.

Cambridge police launched a new plan of attack last year out of its Special Investigations Unit, or SIU, that focuses on intervention and coaching services.

“This is the type of illness that people won’t want help initially, but we don’t let it stop there,” said Det Sgt Louis Cherubino

The outreach team gets involved when the overdose happens and before the person is released from the ER.

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