Mass. Sheriff Concerned About COVID-19 In Jail When Court Activity Resumes
The Hampshire County jail hasn’t reported any covid-19 cases since May, but the sheriff said he’s concerned about possible new cases when normal court activity resumes.
Sheriff Patrick Cahillane said the inmate population has gone down by almost half since the pandemic began. That’s because some were released while awaiting trial, and fewer people have been sentenced since trial activity scaled back.
But he expects trials to start again in the fall, which means more traffic and more potential exposure to the virus.
And while a sheriff in Florida made headlines for refusing to allow mask-wearing in jail, Cahillane is relying on masks to keep his jail safe. So far, he said it’s been challenging to convince inmates to wear masks whenever they’re out of their cell.