05072020_CV_Yakima_184417#12746788.JPG

FILE — A mural recently painted in downtown Sunnyside, where most businesses are now shuttered, urges help in the fight against Covid-19 disease. Sunnyside, with a population of more than 16,700, is one of the communities hardest hit by the virus as it has spread in Yakima County, which has the highest case rate per capita of any county in the three western coastal states of Washington, Oregon and California.

SUNNYSIDE — The number of coronavirus cases among the staff at the Sunnyside jail has increased by two since Friday to 11, according to police officials.

One inmate in the jail has tested positive for the disease, said police Cmdr. Scott Bailey. An inmate who was at the jail later tested positive for coronavirus at the Yakima County jail and has since been released with instructions to quarantine himself, according to Jeremy Welch, the county jail’s chief of security operations.

Of the officers who have tested positive, one has since returned to duty after showing no symptoms for more than 10 days from the first positive test, while a second officer is expected to be back at work Sunday, Bailey said.

The inmate and three officers tested positive earlier this month, and by Friday the number of jail staff testing positive had reached nine, City Manager Martin Casey said.

The jail is not taking any additional inmates until further test results come back showing no more new cases at the jail, Bailey said. There are now 21 inmates in the 97-bed jail.

Coronavirus Coverage

Because of the health and safety concerns, the Herald-Republic is allowing unlimited access with registration to our stories and resources about the novel coronavirus. However, if you’re able to subscribe, please support our journalism. Click here to start your digital subscription.

Reach Donald W. Meyers at dmeyers@yakimaherald.com or on Twitter: donaldwmeyers, or https://www.facebook.com/donaldwmeyersjournalist.