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SC prisons employee dies of coronavirus

The agency said the employee had limited contact with inmates.

BISHOPVILLE, S.C. — The South Carolina Department of Corrections said Tuesday one of its employees died from the coronavirus. 

The employee was a non-security staff member assigned to Lee Correctional Institution in Bishopville. The employee worked in an administrative capacity and had limited contact with inmates, according to the corrections department.

The person was last at work on March 27. The employee received a positive test result on April 5, and the department was notified of the positive test April 7.

The agency said a contact investigation was done to determine whether inmates and staff had come in close contact. The employee was last in close contact with inmates on March 26 and staff on March 27. 

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According to SCDC, none of those inmates or staff members presented with symptoms during the 14-day waiting period recommended by the CDC and DHEC, and none are sick now. 

This is the only staff death from COVID-19,and the agency said no inmates have tested positive. 

SCDC is not releasing the identity at the request of the family.

“My deepest sympathy goes out to this employee’s family,” SCDC Director Bryan Stirling said. “Our staff is working so hard to protect themselves and our inmates. We are lifting up the family in prayer.”

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