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So far, 12 Roanoke City Sheriff’s Office staff have tested positive for the coronavirus

No inmates who have been tested have tested positive

A Roanoke City flag flies in the wind.
A Roanoke City flag flies in the wind. (WSLS)

ROANOKE, Va. – While no inmates at the Roanoke City Jail have tested positive for the coronavirus, the same cannot be said of the Roanoke City Sheriff’s Office staff.

The Sheriff’s Office announced Tuesday that a total of 12 staff have tested positive.

As a precaution, employees who had the potential for exposure were also sent for testing and quarantined, per consultation with the Virginia Department of


The Sheriff’s Office explained some of its policies and procedures regarding COVID-19.

All individuals entering the jail receive a non-invasive temperature check by either their supervisors or the nurse stationed at the booking area and are then required to wear a mask.

Anyone with a fever or other symptoms, or not wearing some type of face covering, is not allowed to enter.

If an arrestee exhibits a fever or other coronavirus symptoms, that person is immediately masked and quarantined in a designated pod for a 14-day monitoring period.

All inmates receive a mask upon admission to the facility and are encouraged to wear them while in their assigned pod; however, they are required to wear them while being transported through the jail.

All incoming inmates also quarantine for a 14-day period prior to being housed in general population.

In addition, any inmate returning from the hospital is quarantined for 14 days.

COVID-19 testing is conducted based on CDC recommendations, and will therefore be completed when there is a reasonable suspicion that an inmate has contracted the disease based on symptoms and/or exposure.

About the Author:

Jeff Williamson arrived at WSLS 10 in March 2016.