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Overcrowded prison accounts for nearly quarter of all prison COVID-19 cases

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One dangerously overcrowded prison in Alabama has nearly a quarter of all the state’s confirmed COVID-19 cases among inmates and staff. 

Twenty percent of all confirmed COVID-19 cases among staff and inmates in Alabama’s prisons were at Staton Correctional Facility in Elmore County, as of Friday, according to the Alabama Department of Corrections. 

Twenty-four workers and 15 inmates have tested positive for the virus at Staton prison, which in March was at 276 percent capacity, according to ADOC’s latest monthly statistical report. There were 1,405 men serving in the prison built for 508, according to the department’s data. 

ADOC announced Friday that seven more employees, three of them at Staton prison, and two inmates tested positive for COVID-19. 

The other confirmed cases among workers were at the Bibb Correctional Facility, the Bullock Correctional Facility, the St. Clair Correctional Facility and one employee at the Criminal Justice Center in Montgomery, which houses the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency. 

Two men serving at the Easterling Correctional Facility also tested positive for coronavirus and were moved to “medical isolation” in the facility, according to the department. 

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Of the 48 inmates who’ve tested positive for COVID-19, 14 have since recovered. Forty-nine of the 145 ADOC employees who have tested positive have recovered. Four men serving in state prisons have died after testing positive for COVID-19.

ADOC had tested 277 of the state’s approximately 22,000 inmates as of Friday.

Eddie Burkhalter is a reporter at the Alabama Political Reporter. You can email him at [email protected] or reach him via Twitter.

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