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Sheriff LaRue: One third of Siskiyou County Jail inmates elected to receive COVID-19 vaccine

Skye Kinkade
Mount Shasta Herald

Siskiyou County Jail in Yreka has been able to avoid a COVID-19 outbreak, experiencing just one positive case since the pandemic began in March, said Sheriff Jeremiah LaRue.

Last week, inmates serving longer sentences were offered their first dose of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine, and "about a third" of the 90 inmates accepted the offer, LaRue said.

Jeremiah LaRue was sworn in as the new interim Siskiyou County Sheriff on Oct. 6, 2020 during a ceremony in front of the Siskiyou County Courthouse in Yreka.

The jail nursing staff administered the vaccine to those inmates who wanted it.

As part of the the booking process, all inmates receive a rapid COVID-19 test, said LaRue, with the results available in 30 minutes. In November, four inmates were isolated after one of them tested positive, said LaRue, although he was asymptomatic and unaware he was COVID-19 positive.

LaRue said jail staff has closely followed safety measures throughout the pandemic and staff and inmates have a daily symptoms check. So far, no members of the jail staff have tested positive for COVID-19. About a third of the jail staff received the vaccine, LaRue said.

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Although the jail normally houses about 108 inmates, only 90 are currently incarcerated due to a reduction made necessary by the pandemic.

LaRue commended the jail staff for being vigilant and working hard to ensure inmates and staff are safe.

Skye Kinkade is the editor of the Mt. Shasta Area Newspapers and the Siskiyou Daily News. She is a fourth generation Siskiyou County resident and has lived in Mount Shasta and Weed her entire life. 

Siskiyou County Jail