15 inmates test positive for COVID-19 at Washington County jail

Fifteen inmates have tested positive for COVID-19 at the Washington County jail, and more people will be screened, according to the local sheriff’s office.

On Saturday, four inmates at Purgatory Correctional Facility began showing symptoms of the virus and were moved to medical isolation cells. Three of the four tested positive for COVID-19.

More testing was done on Monday as inmates were moved to different housing units. All 15 inmates who tested positive, and others who may have been exposed are being quarantined in the facility.

The sheriff’s office planned to test roughly 100 more inmates Wednesday.

As a “precautionary measure,” inmates who initially tested negative remain quarantined until they can be tested again in two weeks. Those who are considered at a higher risk for the virus were moved to medical observation cells until their test results come back.

As the number of cases continues to rise in the state, COVID-19 has appeared at other Utah correctional facilities, including the Utah State Prison, Weber County jail, Salt Lake County jail, Bonneville Community Correctional Center and a halfway house in Salt Lake City.