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68 test positive for COVID-19 at south Alabama metro jail

68 test positive for COVID-19 at south Alabama jail (NBC 15 News)
68 test positive for COVID-19 at south Alabama jail (NBC 15 News)
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MOBILE COUNTY, Ala. (WPMI) — More COVID-19 cases have been confirmed at Mobile Metro Jail.

The sheriff's office on Monday said 38 inmates and 30 employees have tested positive.

Out of those 38 inmates, the warden said six are active with the virus and are in isolation. One medical employee is currently in the intensive care unit.

"We are doing everything we can humanly possible," Warden Trey Oliver said.

Out of the 30 employees who've tested positive, Oliver said eight have returned to work but 22 are still out sick.

"Twelve other officers are out for COVID-related issues," he said.


He said it's putting a strain on the department.

"We are about 30 employees short, however before this crisis started, we were already 40 something short. So this has really put us in a crisis," he said.

With less manpower, employees are working longer hours.

"We are doing the best we can with what we have. We are not able to give officers a break for sometimes 12 hours and that's not good. That's never a good situation," Oliver said.

So far, 68 cases have been confirmed within the jail. Oliver says three more inmates' tests are pending and hundreds of inmates are in isolation out of precaution.

"So it's a very hostile, tense environment right now. Our employees are under a lot of stress," he said.

Oliver said the facility is following CDC guidelines, but he says maintaining six feet inside the jail is not feasible.

"Even though we were able to reduce our jail from almost 1,600 to less than 1,000, that still puts too many people in a cell designed for two people," he said.

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Mobile Mayor Sandy Stimpson and Sheriff Sam Cochran will discuss testing for staff and inmates Tuesday morning at 8. NBC 15 News will be there and bring you the latest updates.

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