LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) -- Seven drug addicts have walked through the doors of the Jeffersontown Police Department one month after launching a program that puts addicts in treatment centers.
“It's an awesome feeling, and to know that you're actually helping somebody so that today you don't have to use,” said Jeffersontown Police Sergeant Brittney Garrett.
Sgt. Garrett launched the Angel Program at the J-Town Police Department. Her passion to fight addiction stems from a personal connection.
“Family members who have gone through addiction recovery,” she explains, “but also seeing my generation being affected by this the most right now.”
The program allows addicts to walk into a police station, where officers then work to place them in treatment centers. Seven people may have walked through the door, but Sgt. Garrett says there are more and more people calling everyday asking questions about the program.
“There's a trust issue and we want people to know, this is no gimmick. If you come in, you're going to get help. You're not going to jail,” said Jeffersontown Police Chief Ken Hatmaker.
Addicts won’t be sent to jail even if after having a conversation, they decide they’re not ready.
“If you come in under the program and turn in drugs or paraphernalia, and you decide you don't want to be a part of the program, you're not ready, you're not ready, we're not going to charge you for that, we're going to dispose of it,” said Sgt. Garrett.
Chief Hatmaker says the program helps to create a balance; compassion for the addicts, but still conviction for the dealers. Officers who are assisting these addicts are also working to take down those pushing the drugs.
“Drug dealers, this isn't open to you. You folks are still going to go to the penitentiary,” Chief Hatmaker explains.
He says Jeffersontown police are working every day to take drugs dealers and their customers off the streets.
“Seeing people overdose and giving CPR on people who have overdosed, or giving naloxone or these different types of things that I've seen face-to-face, it makes you want to do something different,” Sgt. Garrett said.
On September 10, Jeffersontown Police will also attend a Rally for Recovery all in an effort to diminish the drug problem in Jefferson County.