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MDC officer tests positive for COVID-19

Bernalillo County Metropolitan Detention Center.

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — A corrections sergeant at the Metropolitan Detention Center has been quarantined after contracting COVID-19.

The sergeant was tested for the virus May 7 and the results came back positive May 11, Bernalillo County spokeswoman Tiffany Chamblee said in a news release Wednesday. Three staff members who were in contact with him have also been quarantined.

“This is a very fluid situation and more information will be communicated once more details are solidified,” MDC Chief Greg Richardson said in the release. “We are committed to doing everything we can to keep staff and inmates safe.”

Chamblee said the sergeant was working in the jail’s intake area, not in general population, and any new inmates he may have come into contact with were already in the quarantine area set up last month.

“The officer is asymptomatic and has been sent home to self-quarantine,” she said.

After the sergeant tested positive, the jail was put on lockdown as officials traced the officer’s contact with staff and inmates.

“Those officers and staff that MDC has already identified as having contact with the positive staff member have been sent home to self-quarantine,” Chamblee said in the release. “MDC anticipates there may be more staff identified, as video is reviewed to retrace the sergeant’s movement.”

According to the release, the Department of Health began surveillance testing at the jail last week and has tested 236 officers and civilian staffers and 103 inmates.

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