Dane County Jail reports 38 inmates with COVID-19

COVID-19 in prisons and jails
COVID-19 in prisons and jails(WRDW)
Published: Nov. 19, 2020 at 2:11 PM CST|Updated: Nov. 19, 2020 at 2:33 PM CST
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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - A “significant number” of inmates in the Dane County Jail’s Public Safety Building have tested positive for COVID-19.

The Dane County Sheriff’s Office had previously reported a total of 16 inmates in the jail who had tested positive for COVID-19.

According to a news release, inmates in one housing unit started to show mild symptoms shortly later and the entire housing unit was tested. At noon Thursday, 22 of those inmates tested positive for COVID-19. This brings the total count of active cases in the jail to 38.

A spokesperson for the sheriff’s office noted that just weeks earlier, the jail only had one COVID-19 positive inmate.

The department reported that all cases are either asymptomatic or have mild symptoms of the virus.

Sheriff Mahoney has requested that justice partners release as many inmates with COVID-19 as possible. Those that need to remain in the jail will continue to isolate and be monitored by jail medical staff.

The department said if an inmate’s symptoms require hospitalization, they will be taken to the hospital. They also said the current design of the jail and the conditions are challenging for social distancing, as the population of the jail across all three facilities is 488.

The department also urged the importance of moving forward with the Jail Consolidation Project without a delay.

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