15 prison units locked down including one here due to COVID-19

Published: Apr. 7, 2020 at 5:18 PM CDT
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The Lane Murray Unit in Gatesville and 14 others around the state were locked down Thursday because of the COVID-19 outbreak.

The Texas Department of Criminal Justice says it will lock down any unit at which either an inmate or an employee tests positive for the virus.

Only employees assigned to those units will be allowed on site.

Eleven cases of the virus had been confirmed as of Thursday afternoon at the Murray Unit.

Seventeen inmates were isolated and 1,143 were on medical restriction.

The first case at the unit, involving a laundry supervisor, was confirmed on April 1.

Three days later a 37-year-old inmate at the unit tested positive.

The death of a 72-year-old inmate at the Telford Unit in New Boston is under investigation to determine whether it was linked to the virus.

Bartolo Infante died at a hospital in Texarkana, where he was in medical isolation with viral pneumonia.

He tested positive on April 3.

Four employees and seven inmates at the unit have also tested positive for the virus.

The lockdowns remain in effect for 14 days after the date of the positive test and will be extended if other tests are positive.

Correctional staff members are required to wear cotton masks at work and urged to wear them in public when off duty.

Lockdowns were also in force Thursday at the Beto, Clements, Darrington, East Texas Treatment Facility, Estelle, Goree, Jordan, Ramsey, Robertson, Smith, Stringfellow, Telford, Woodman, Wynne units.