Employee at Lee Correctional Institution dies from COVID-19

Updated: Apr. 14, 2020 at 3:40 PM EDT
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CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - Officials say an employee at the Lee Correctional Institution in Bishopville has died from complications from COVID-19.

The South Carolina Department of Corrections made the announcement on Tuesday afternoon, and said the employee died on Sunday.

“SCDC is sorry to announce that a non-security staff member assigned to Lee Correctional Institution died from complications of COVID-19 on April 12,” SCDC officials said in a statement.

A report states the employee, who worked in an administrative capacity and had limited contact with inmates, was last at work on March 27.

According to officials, the employee received a positive test result on April 5, and the department was notified of the positive test April 7. Authorities 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,” SCDC officials said."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. 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.”

According to SCDC officials, there have been 29 staff members who have confirmed cases of COVID-19.

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