Monroe inmate who tests positive for COVID-19 the first to contract it inside a state prison

MONROE, Wash. – An inmate at the state's Monroe Correctional Complex has tested positive for COVID-19, the first state inmate to contract the virus while inside a Washington state correctional facility.

According to the state Department of Corrections, the man was housed at the complex's minimum security unit and was taken to a local hospital for testing after showing symptoms.

He was taken back to the state's correctional complex in Monroe and placed in a single-person cell per protocol, DOC said.

The inmate's former housing unit is now in quarantine, with none of the unit's 119 inmates able to move in or out of the unit. There are 420 inmates total in the minimum security facility. All staff in the unit have been directed to wear N95 masks.

Another inmate at the Monroe Correctional Complex was infected with COVID-19 on March 27, but he was being housed at a community medical center at the time. He has remained at the community medical center since then.

A number of inmates have been freed across the country - including more than 600 in King County - as concerns continue over coronavirus outbreaks inside jails.