A boost in drug arrests is exhausting police's man power.

In East Grand Forks, police say people are struggling with addiction. Police say they've seen a spike in arrests for drugs like meth.

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Lt. Rod Hajicek, East Grand Forks Police Department: "Between 80 and 85 people that have been arrested since the first of the year, which is four times the normal amount."

Hajicek, the city’s longtime lieutenant, says the East Grand Forks Police Department is busier this winter than he's seen in years. People are being busted for drugs like marijuana and meth each day.

Lt. Hajicek: "It can be hidden in a makeup case like this along with the little baggies that have meth in them. We've been handling it okay. There's a lot of paperwork that needs to pushed through and it does put a burden on officers and the county attorney's office."

Officer Cheryl Sevigny is one of 23 people on the force. She says drugs are taking a toll on local residents.

Sevigny: "A little bit more with the meth, and a little bit more with the heroin as far as with the OD's, which is overdoses."

And busting people for driving under the influence of those drugs, as well as probation violations, have their officers like Sevigny scattered, even taking some away from important tasks.

Lt. Hajicek: "School resource officer for instance is also pulled away from their normal duties to respond to calls because we just don't have the personnel at that time of the day to respond."

It's an epidemic the department is working to stop, but they don't know how. They say they don't know why it's gotten so bad in recent weeks.

Sevigny: "We can't have that on the streets, we can't have them behind the wheel, it's a safety issue for everyone involved."

The East Grand Forks Police Department is working on hiring one more officer to bring its count up to 24, the usual number of officers.

Across the river in Grand Forks, police say they're busy, but not noticing similar increases in drug crimes.