Nearly 50 inmates and staff members test positive for COVID-19 at Marion County Jail, deputies say

Video: Nearly 50 inmates and staff members test positive for COVID-19 at Marion County Jail, deputies say

MARION COUNTY, Fla. — A COVID-19 outbreak has been contained to one area inside the Marion County Jail after inmates and staff members tested positive for the virus, deputies said.

“We have 36 inmates that were positive and 10 of our employees that were positive in the jail,” Deputy Paul Bloom said.

Bloom said all of the COVID-19 positive inmates have been isolated to one pod, which is where the most violent offenders reside.

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Offcials said there are 151 inmates in that pod and all but eight have been tested because those eight inmates refused to take the test.

Blooms said so far, inmates showing symptoms have been treated at the jail’s medical unit.

As for employees, Bloom said so far none have bene treated at a hospital.

Officials said for the most part, the majority of those who tested positive are asymptomatic.

Some jails have released inmates to reduce the jail populations.

Even though Marion County has more than 1,400 inmates, officials made it clear releasing inmates is not an option.

“When someone goes to jail, they are either ordered there by their actions, something they have been arrested for and he’s going to uphold that. He’s not released any inmates because of COVID,” Bloom said.