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5 employees and 79 inmates test positive for COVID-19 at Kenosha County Jail, detention center

Updated: 12:36 p.m. on April 30, 2020 

KENOSHA COUNTY, Wis. (CBS 58) -- Kenosha County officials have found that five employees and 79 inmates at the Kenosha County Jail and Kenosha County Detention Center have tested positive for COVID-19. 

The Kenosha County Sheriff's Department received help from the Wisconsin National Guard to complete COVID-19 testing of approximately 250 employees and 420 inmates. 

According to a news release from the sheriff's department, the confined areas of the jail and detention center present challenges when it comes to mitigation and elimination of the spread of illness or disease and COVID-19 is no exception.

The department employees who tested positive have been placed on quarantine and the identified inmates have been placed into isolated dorms. 

The Kenosha County Sheriff’s Department early on has made operational changes to the Kenosha County Jail and Kenosha County Detention Center to help slow the spread of COVID-19.  These changes include:

  • The department is working with other law enforcement agencies to reduce the number of people being brought into the jail.
  • Face-to-face conferences between defendants, attorneys, and support staff were shifted from personal meetings in the same room to phone conferences or meetings through glass partitions using phones.
  • People who are newly housed at the jail are being housed in a separate area.
  • Eliminated all unnecessary inmate movement.
  • A medical isolation dorm has been created for inmates that are symptomatic or test positive for COVID-19.
  • Inmates are being provided with masks.
  • Corrections staff are required to wear personal protective equipment to protect themselves and our inmate population from the spread of COVID-19.
  • Preventive cleaning within each facility continues throughout the day using medical-grade disinfectants.
  • Electronic monitoring was increased to allow eligible inmates to be released from jail to limit the inmate population.

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Published: 7:43 a.m. on April 28, 2020 

KENOSHA, Wis. (CBS 58) -- The National Guard will be in Kenosha this week to help assist with COVID-19 testing at the Kenosha County Detention Center and Pretrial Facility.

According to a press release, all 420 inmates and 250 employees at the facilities will be tested. Currently, authorities say there are 13 known COVID-19-positive employees at the Detention Center. There is one positive employee and one positive inmate at the Pretrial Facility.

More information can be found on Kenosha County's website

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