Clay County Jail sees first outbreak of COVID-19 in nearly two years

Photo by: Clay County Jail
Photo by: Clay County Jail

(Moorhead, MN) -- It took nearly two years, but not even the Clay County Jail could avoid dealing with a mini-outbreak of the COVID-19 virus.

Clay County Sheriff Mark Empting told WDAY Radio's Bonnie and Friends Monday that as of this past weekend, 11 cases of the virus have been observed inside the facility.

"We had to shutdown one pod, and move some inmates to another as a result," said Sheriff Empting."We kept it out of the jail for 22 months. With those 11 cases, they're all pretty mild symptoms."

Empting did say however that he feels the bigger concern inside the jail is mental health. "That's why we have that mental health wing in the facility," said Empting, being that it has been a massive help for what many consider to be one of the bigger issues in general not only in the F-M area, but across the country in the wake of the pandemic.

The jail has had to move inmates to other facilities across the region recently, but Empting says that's not due to COVID. He says staffing is the bigger issue there, which they hope to get resolved soon.