More at Cook County jail test positive for COVID-19

Daily Herald report
Updated 3/24/2020 8:26 PM

An additional inmate and two staff members have tested positive for COVID-19 at Cook County jail, officials said late Tuesday.

The most recent confirmed case is a 47-year-old detainee who's being treated at a hospital. The man had been in custody since October 2018 on a residential burglary charge, according to a news release from the Cook County Department of Corrections. Two other inmates already tested positive.


Another detainee tested negative, and 24 have pending results after having flu-like symptoms.

Staff members at the jail's Cermak Hospital "are closely monitoring the detainees on the living units where these individuals were housed, and will test any detainees who are symptomatic," officials said.

All detainees have access to soap and water, and the jail compound undergoes regular, comprehensive cleaning and disinfecting, the release said. To prevent the spread of the virus, detainee visits has been suspended and new inmates are placed in specific housing areas and observed for seven days for symptoms of the virus.

Earlier this month, barracks formerly used for an inmate boot camp were prepared to be opened as an additional 500 beds for detainees, if needed.

Sheriff Tom Dart is consulting with Harry Grenawitzke, an environmental health expert and former Department of Justice monitor.

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