Muscogee County Sheriff Donna Tompkins says one of two inmates with flu-like symptoms on March 24 has tested positive for COVID-19.
The inmates were sent to Piedmont Columbus Regional and sent back to the jail and put in isolation. They were then tested on March 25 at the Columbus Department of Public Health. The notification from the DPH came this morning.
Tompkins says the inmate who tested positive has been incarcerated since October of 2019. She says it’s a mystery how he contracted the virus and when. Tompkins says neither of the inmates has had a fever for five days now. They’ve been isolated for eight days since returning from Piedmont on March 24. The inmates are in the jail’s medical clinic being monitored.
Tompkins says protective equipment has been given to the staff that has come in contact with the inmate. The staff is being monitored as well. She says at this time no staff member is exhibiting any flu-like symptoms.
On March 16 Tompkins says the jail began a policy of separating any new inmates away from the those who had already been inside the facility. The second inmate who was tested came to the jail two weeks prior to being tested.