How is the Sheriff's Office responding to the coronavirus (COVID-19) emergency?
Personal visiting at the Adult Detention Center and Alternative Incarceration Branch is suspended until further notice to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. All inmates will be given two free 15-minute calls per week in lieu of personal visiting. Professional visiting (attorneys, probation officers, law enforcement officials and court-authorized behavioral health professionals) will continue as non-contact visits. We encourage professional visitors to come during normal business hours.
At this time, volunteers are not permitted in the Adult Detention Center. The Sheriff's Office has temporarily suspended volunteer-led inmate programs and services to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. We are exploring options to use electronic platforms to conduct some of these activities remotely.
Yes. Following recommendations of the Fairfax County Health Department, we have protocols in place for intake at the Adult Detention Center. When an arrestee is brought into the ADC, deputies conducting the initial pat search will ask the individual screening questions to determine their possible exposure to the coronavirus. Deputies also will use a digital thermometer to check the temperature of every arrestee. If an individual has a temperature of 100.4 degrees or above or if they answer yes to any of the screening questions, a deputy will summon the receiving nurse to conduct a more in-depth screening. If the nurse determines the individual is possibly infected with COVID-19, the nurse will place a mask on the individual, who will be isolated in a receiving cell after the booking process has been completed. The Sheriff’s Office will then immediately contact the Health Department for consultation. All individuals booked into the ADC are quarantined for 14 days prior to admission to the general population.
Yes. We follow best cleaning practices recommended by the Health Department and the CDC. We have reassigned staff who are doing a deep clean throughout the ADC four times per week, using a hospital grade fogger or spray sanitizer and focusing on all the high touch areas. Our cleaning products are EPA certified to kill bacteria and viruses. We also have sanitizing wipes for daily use.
Every cell block in the ADC has at least one TV. At the bottom of the screens, we regularly run informative messages. In light of COVID-19, our message emphasizes the need to frequently wash hands with soap and water as the best way to avoid the virus. We remind inmates to wash their hands before and after attending programs, before and after visiting, before and after meals, and after using the restroom. Cell blocks are cleaned every day.
On March 30, 2020, an inmate in his 20’s tested positive for COVID-19. He has been incarcerated since January 29, 2020 and is now in isolation in the Adult Detention Center. The Sheriff’s Office will continue to work closely with the Health Department to identify individuals who have been in close contact and are at increased risk. While we are doing everything we can to prevent the spread of illness, it is possible that additional cases will occur since individuals already could have been exposed.
The Sheriff’s Office does not have the authority to overturn court orders. If a court were to direct us to release inmates, we would follow the court's order.
Not at this time - The Supreme Court of Virginia has extended its order declaring a judicial emergency to be in effect through April 26. Therefore, the General District Court will not issue new evictions through April 26. Likewise, the Sheriff's Office will not execute pending evictions through April 26. Further, we are not accepting 5-day or 30-day letters (Step 1: Notice to Tenant) during this time. For reference, please see the Supreme Court of Virginia's order extending its judicial emergency.
Not at this time - Our March and April child safety seat inspection events were cancelled to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. In light of Governor Northam's Stay at Home order, which remains in effect until June 10 unless amended or rescinded, the Sheriff's Office will most likely cancel the May 30 event. Please visit our safety seat page for status updates.
Not at this time - The Sheriff's Office has canceled upcoming child ID events to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.