PUEBLO — The Pueblo County Sheriff's office announced on their Facebook page that they were notified of a COVID-19 outbreak at the Pueblo County Jail.
The Sheriff's Office said there have been at least two or more confirmed cases of COVID-19 during a 14-day period. The latest outbreak comes just five weeks after the jail had been cleared of an outbreak that lasted 8 months. Public health officials confirmed an initial outbreak at the jail on October 30, 2020. That outbreak was officially cleared on July 20 after the facility reported no new cases of COVID-19 among inmates or employees for a 28-day period
Correctional facilities and jails have been hot spots for outbreaks throughout the pandemic, due to a higher risk of being exposued to viruses and difficulty with social distancing.
The Sheriff's Office said those who have tested positive are in isolation and anyone who was in close contact with them is in quarantine.
“As COVID cases in our community have recently increased, particularly with the presence of the Delta variant, cases in our jail have also increased,” said Pueblo County Sheriff Kirk M. Taylor. “We continue to take all precautions that we have been taking throughout this pandemic to protect our staff and the inmates from this virus. We do daily screenings, maintain a strict regimen of cleaning and disinfecting in all of our facilities, and are following CDC (Centers for Disease Control) guidelines.”
Sheriff Taylor said employees working in the jail wear face coverings and are tested weekly, while inmates are being tested twice a week. Rapid tests are also provided to inmates when they are summoned to court.
Right now they said they are working with defense counsel for resetting hearings if an inmate is in isolation or quarantine and cannot attend.
“We will continue to aggressively take the steps necessary to prevent further spread of the virus among our employees and the inmates,” Taylor said. “The health and safety of all our employees, inmates, and the public are our top priority.”