10 El Paso County Sheriff’s Office employees test positive for COVID-19 through the month of October along with multiple inmates

Published: Oct. 26, 2020 at 1:14 PM MDT|Updated: Oct. 27, 2020 at 6:51 PM MDT
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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KKTV) - The El Paso County Sheriff’s Office says 10 employees have tested positive for COVID-19 throughout the month of October.

The sheriff’s office first reported Monday that eight employees had tested positive within the past three weeks. EPSO said some of the employees were sworn officers and others, civilians.

Tuesday, two more employees, both deputies, were added to that count, along with eight inmates at the El Paso County jail.

“For the health and safety of employees, inmates and the public, there have been increased preventive measures to include daily cleaning and disinfecting of the facility,” the sheriff’s office said in a news release Monday. “Sheriff’s office staff has had plans and structures in place since the beginning of this pandemic to mitigate the spread of COVID-19. We continue to take steps to prevent further spread to inmates housed at the El Paso County jail and employees across the organization. The sheriff’s office continues to work diligently in collaboration with El Paso County Public Health. We continue to adhere to the guidelines and recommendations of Public Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.”

Two of the 10 employees work in the same section at the courthouse (court and transport). The other infected employees work across the sheriff’s office in floor security, patrol, EPSO’s tactical support unit, and the communications center.

The sheriff’s office says the deputies and inmates who most recently tested positive have been isolated. Anyone who has had direct, indirect, or work-related contact with them has been notified. The inmate cases were identified through routine testing that all jail inmates go through prior to moving to a Department of Corrections facility to carry out their sentences.

Click here for more on the most recent cases.

To date, 21 employees and 11 inmates have tested positive for COVID-19. The sheriff’s office has lost one employee to the virus, Deputy Jeff Hopkins. Hopkins contracted the virus while working at the El Paso County jail, and his passing is considered a line of duty death.

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