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More COVID-19 Cases At Montgomery County Jail

Montgomery County Jail
Joshua Chenault

Another inmate at the Montgomery County jail has tested positive for COVID-19. 

The first case of COVID-19 at the jail was reported last week. Two guards have also tested positive, and two more inmates with symptoms are waiting for test results. 

Close to 70 inmates are now under quarantine, more than 10 percent of the total population. While quarantined, inmates are not able to leave their cells for recreation. Major Jeremy Roy, the jail division commander, said the sheriff has asked local police departments and courts to keep people out of the facility as much as possible.

“The lower the population in here, the better that we can try to social distance the best we can,” he said. “But obviously, facilities like this, social distancing is not a luxury that we always have.” 

While Ohioans in the general population can now get tested without symptoms or a doctor’s order, mass testing is not being done at the jail. Roy said the facility's medical directors did not recommend mass testing at the jail, a transient facility unlike a prison. Plus, the jail does not have enough test kits available to test all of the inmates regularly. 

“Right now, Public Health only has about 1,000 test kits that they can even use for us. So if we were to do mass testing, we would use 600 today,” he said.

While working at the station Leila Goldstein has covered the economic effects of grocery cooperatives, police reform efforts in Dayton and the local impact of the coronavirus pandemic on hiring trends, telehealth and public parks. She also reported Trafficked, a four part series on misinformation and human trafficking in Ohio.