An individual who was arrested and taken to York County Jail on Wednesday tested positive for COVID-19. Initially without symptoms, the inmate has been taken to hospital, said Sheriff William L. King. Tammy Wells photo

ALFRED – An arrestee brought to York County Jail on Wednesday, July 8 has tested positive for COVID-19, said York County Sheriff William L. King.

It is the first positive case at the jail since March, when the coronavirus first surfaced in Maine.

“The individual was asymptomatic, and the COVID screening tool did not raise any concerns,” said King, who noted all inmates entering the jail are tested for the coronavirus. He said the test came back positive on Thursday, July 9.

“The facility reported the positive case to the Maine CDC and together we initiated our response plan,” said King, which included staff testing.

King said the individual was masked and placed in a single cell in the restricted housing area of the jail. The inmate later began experiencing symptoms and was taken to hospital.

Four corrections officers who had contact with the inmate were tested; all of the tests came back negative.

Voluntary testing was offered to other corrections staff, and about six chose to be tested, King said.

The sheriff said every inmate is tested as they arrive at the facility, and that the jail regularly undergoes a thorough cleaning regimen.

“We’re a very clean facility,” he said.

There had been no reported cases of COVID-19 among inmates at Maine county jails until June 29, when the Cumberland County Jail in Portland confirmed that one inmate had tested positive for the virus.

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