Chesapeake Correctional Center reports coronavirus outbreak; 90 inmates have tested positive

Coronavirus

CHESAPEAKE, Va. (WAVY) – The Chesapeake City Jail is reporting its first coronavirus outbreak at the facility.

Our sister-station WAVY-TV confirmed 90 inmates have tested positive for the virus.

These are the early results from their initial round of testing.

The jail is initiating facility-wide testing for all inmates, correctional staff, and court personnel.

The sheriff’s office says on Nov. 12, three inmates, six deputies and two contractors tested positive for coronavirus. The inmates were moved to isolation and all other inmates in the known affected areas were quarantined and tested.

“We went from being zero to 100 miles an hour within a day but we had everything in place ahead of time,” said Chesapeake Sheriff Jim O’Sullivan.

The Chesapeake Correctional Center averages 985 inmates, so about 10-percent of the inmate population is currently infected.

The Chesapeake Sheriff’s Office says it is working with the Virginia Health Department to begin
testing the entire inmate population and correctional staff members this week.

O’Sullivan says they’re fortunate to have temporary housing units from when they had an overflow of inmates.

This was before their new facility was finished. 

“We’re able to take them out of the building, put them out there and keep them out of the general population. We were hoping we never had to open it but obviously, it looks like we are now,” O’ Sullivan said.

Out of 90 positive inmates, he says only three are showing mild symptoms. 

Those with symptoms have been put in the negative pressure cells and a medical unit.

O’Sullivan says he feels for the inmates’ loved ones and they will get through this with the staff together.

“I want to let them know they are in good hands. We have all our procedures in place for the very best care for them,” O’Sullivan said.

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