From Macon County Sheriff Robert Holland:
As we reported last week, all inmate visitations remains suspended due to multiple cases of Covid being suspected in our detention center. This decision was made in the best interest of staff and inmates and done as a precautionary measure. Working with our local health department and our detention center physician & nurse to have all inmates and all of our detention officers tested. This was requested as voluntary testing. As reported earlier, all but two inmates agreed to be tested.
As of today (September 12, 2021), 82 of 83 tests have returned. A total of 58 negative tests and a total of 24 resulted in positive for covid19. All 24 positive results were of male inmates and are in the dormitory section of our facility. We currently have no positive cases in the female dorm. All MCSO detention officers tests resulted in negative for Covid19. Although negative, we will continue to monitor all employees and inmates as we have done throughout this pandemic and conduct additional tests when appropriate. In addition to this week’s testing, we conducted “Rapid Tests” for additional officers who reported for work this weekend and all those tests resulted in negative for Covid19.
While visitation was suspended and because we were concerned for all the inmates mental health due to denying opportunity for visits, detention center staff made sure inmates had the opportunity to call family or friends if they needed to. Staff reported that inmates voiced appreciation for looking out for their well-being. Sheriff Robert L. Holland states, “Earlier this evening I called and had my staff communicate with each of our dorms via intercom system and asked if all inmates had the opportunity to use the phones today to call anyone if they needed to and the inmates confirmed they had. I also had them confirm all phones within our facility were operational throughout the weekend.”
At this time, only one inmate remains hospitalized due to Covid and has been prescribed oxygen. Our facility is unable to adequately provide an appropriate location for an inmate needing an device to provide oxygen due to all of our isolation cells being occupied with other Covid positive inmates. All other inmates symptoms range from no symptoms to minor symptoms. Medical staff from our local health department and MCSO detention center physician has maintained continuous communication throughout the weekend with staff and inmates. As of this release, all inmates continue to be doing well.
If anyone is concerned about a family member incarcerated in our facility you can contact Macon County Jail Administrator Lieutenant Dereck Jones. Please understand that our staff will NOT confirm your family member has Covid and will NOT provide you with any medical information by telephone. THEY LEGALLY are not permitted to do so. YOUR family member incarcerated in the Macon County Detention Center has access to a telephone and can call you to provide their medical information if they choose. No inmates currently incarcerated in our facility is severely ill at this time but all of them continue to be closely monitored.
Sheriff Holland concludes, “When I called earlier this evening most of the inmates that are positive for Covid19 were doing well and most were enjoying watching a football game on TV.”
Superior Court begins this week: Inmates who have tested positive for Covid19 will Not be transported out of our facility to Superior Court tomorrow but arrangements will be made for video conferencing if it is deemed necessary to appear for any court proceedings