Volusia County Jail on lockdown as employees, inmate test positive for COVID-19

Cases mark first for facility


VOLUSIA COUNTY, Fla. – The Volusia County Jail has reported its first three coronavirus cases -- two employees and a former inmate -- prompting lockdown procedures at the facility.

The county issued a news release Wednesday evening detailing the cases and the jail’s protocol going forward. Until now, the jail had not had any staff members or inmates test positive.

Officials said on Tuesday, they were contacted by the relative of an inmate who was booked into jail on Thursday and released 15 hours later without any symptoms that that former inmate was positive for COVID-19.

According to a news release, that inmate wore a mask while in the initial intake area and was then moved to a single cell where they did not have contact with any other inmates.

Also on Tuesday, a correctional officer and a civilian employee learned they had been diagnosed as well. They have been placed on leave while they self-quarantine.

The jail was initially placed on lockdown in April to prevent the spread of COVID-19 but some of those restrictions had been eased recently since no cases were detected. Now, full lockdown procedures will be reinstated.

“Under the lockdown, virtual visitation was implemented in lieu of face-to-face visitation and that service has continued throughout the pandemic. Also, all newly-arriving inmates are quarantined for 14 days and inmates’ use of showers and telephones are still permitted, but on a limited basis,” a news release read.

Corrections Director Mark Flowers released a message to employees recently reminding them of the importance of wearing masks, social distancing and practicing good hygiene.

There are currently 1,274 inmates at the Volusia County Jail.

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