Troup County Jail currently has zero COVID cases; continues to be proactive to limit transmission

Published 8:00 am Thursday, January 13, 2022

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As residents of Troup County continue to feel the effects of the latest surge of COVID-19, the Troup County Jail currently has zero positive COVID cases, according to their Public Information Officer Stewart Smith.  Smith said a few inmates have tested positive in the last few months, but they have recovered and none are currently positive.

“At any given time, we had maybe two or three. I wouldn’t even consider it a surge. We had maybe two or three and then they would drop off and then we might have one or two,” Smith said. “We have 550 inmates in our jail, and we have zero cases of COVID positives.”

Smith said there is a 24 hour medical unit for inmates who want to get tested or start to show symptoms.

“We have a 24-hour medical unit here at the sheriff’s office that assesses sick patients and handles medicine distribution, routine exams and stuff like that,” Smith said.

The jail continues to follow its COVID protocols, which includes offering a mask to every inmate, a screening as they enter the jail and an isolation period. Smith said if the jail does see a surge, staff will follow the precedent from last July.

“We would go back to what we did last July. We had to do a mass testing. Those that were found to be positive, we took those and isolated them at our annex facility, which is the old prison,” Smith said. “We’ve got plans in place if we have to, if we have another surge, that we can move those inmates that are positive to dorms with [other] positive inmates.”

Smith said if there were to be an incident where a dorm in the jail might all contract the virus, the jail would be prepared to handle it safely.

“If it gets to a point where one dorm is positive, then we would basically just leave them where they’re at and limit movement in and out of that dorm,” Smith said.

Smith said inmates who become sick while in the jail do still have options when it comes to their court hearings.

“They could potentially do a hearing virtually, and they do some of those periodically,” Smith said. “If it was a case where the inmate was sick and couldn’t participate at all, then it would be up to the court system to change the date of the hearing.”