Suffredin- For a Better Cook County  
 

Accountability
Forest Preserves
Public Safety
Cook County Budget
Forest Pres. Budget
Property Tax Appeal
Health & Hospitals
Land Bank Authority
Policy Resolutions
Unsung Heroine

 

   
 
   
   
 
   
     
  Office phone numbers:  
   
 
 

The Cook County Code of Ordinances are the current laws of Cook County.

   
 

Search current and proposed Cook County Legislation in Larry's exclusive legislative library.

   
  Cook County Hospital fills more outpatient prescriptions every day than are filled at 26 Walgreen's drug store combined.
   
     
     
     



More COVID-19 Cases Discovered in Cook County Jail
By Wednesday evening, 17 detainees had tested positive

Wednesday, March 25, 2020
WTTW News
by Matt Masterson

More COVID-19 Cases Discovered in Cook County Jail

By Wednesday evening, 17 detainees had tested positive

Matt Masterson | March 25, 2020 8:16 pm

The number of Cook County Jail detainees who have tested positive for COVID-19 nearly tripled between Wednesday morning and evening, according to the sheriff’s office, which has now tested 50 individuals who have begun exhibiting flu-like symptoms.

As of 5 p.m. Wednesday, 17 detainees at the jail had tested positive for the new coronavirus, along with four correctional staff employees and one sheriff’s officer. The Cook County Sheriff’s Office says it is still awaiting the results of 31 other detainees who have so far been tested.

Test results for just two detainees have come back negative, officials said.

The first confirmed case of COVID-19 at the jail was announced Sunday, followed by a report Monday that two detainees, ages 42 and 18, had the virus.

“Cermak staff are closely monitoring the detainees on the living units where these individuals were housed, and will test any detainees who are symptomatic,” the sheriff’s office said in a statement Wednesday evening.

Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart’s office also said the entire jail compound is undergoing “regular, comprehensive cleaning and disinfecting” and that detainees have access to soap and water and are being educated on how to spot and report symptoms of the virus.

Between Friday and Wednesday, the jail population decreased by 185 detainees, according to sheriff’s office data, from nearly 5,500 down to 5,306.

Already, the sheriff’s office has suspended detainee visits at the jail and created housing tiers for new inmates booked at the jail. It also added 500 beds of isolation housing in an “inmate bootcamp” located away from the main jail campus to help relieve pressure on Cermak Hospital, according to the sheriff’s office.

Cook County Judge LeRoy K. Martin Jr. on Monday ordered expedited bond hearings in an effort to hear “the maximum number of requests in the shortest period of time.” That process began Tuesday.

These hearings will be held for certain types of detainees, including those with an elevated risk of contracting COVID-19 due to age or health issues; pregnant women; and those charged with nonviolent misdemeanors or felonies, among others.

On Tuesday, Mayor Lori Lightfoot and a group of suburban mayors penned a letter to Martin, urging that these expedited bond hearings be “exercised with care.”

Specifically, the mayors want to know if detainees who are released will be screened for COVID-19 symptoms before being released into the community and whether any detainees could end up homeless because they have no place to stay outside the jail.

“As mayors and organizations that represent mayors in Cook County, we believe these key questions must be addressed when considering the process for release for anyone who may be vulnerable or worse already sick,” the letter states. “We have resources to support these individuals, but we cannot be on the sidelines. Public health considerations post-release are also relevant in this time of crisis, and must inform the individualized release determinations.”

Lightfoot later told reporters she wants to see a “safety net” put into place for those who are released so they aren’t “just dumped on the street” and end up in the hospital.

But advocacy groups have said a much more drastic reduction is necessary to prevent a full outbreak within the jail. On Wednesday, the Chicago Community Bond Fund said it’s working with other groups to pay off $120,000 in bond payments to get 20 detainees out of the jail.

“There is no amount of money from philanthropic efforts from individuals or community groups that will fix this disastrous situation,” Sharlyn Grace, executive director of Chicago Community Bond Fund, said in a statement. “We call on Cook County officials to do their jobs and protect the lives of people living in Cook County by releasing people from Cook County Jail.”

Contact Matt Masterson: @ByMattMasterson | mmasterson@wttw.com | (773) 509-5431

 

 



Recent Headlines

Unemployment rate unexpectedly falls
Friday, June 05, 2020
Crain's Chicago Business

$140M renovation to transform old Cook County Hospital into hotel, office complex nearly complete
Friday, June 05, 2020
WLS ABC 7 Eyewitness News

How badly will COVID, looting hurt CPS finances?
Thursday, June 04, 2020
Crain's Chicago Business

Cook County Jail releases could be spreading COVID-19 in community, study suggests
Thursday, June 04, 2020
Chicago Sun-Times

Daily COVID-19 cases dip under 1,000, but officials warn it could take 2 weeks to see if protests prompt uptick (LIVE UPDATES)
Thursday, June 04, 2020
Chicago Sun-Times

Cook County state’s attorney’s office says it will review allegations that Chicago cops pulled woman from car by her hair and placed knee on her neck
Thursday, June 04, 2020
Chicago Tribune

Report: 1 in 6 Chicago COVID-19 Cases Can Be Tied to Cook County Jail
Thursday, June 04, 2020
WTTW News

Cook County campsites, dog parks among amenities reopening
Thursday, June 04, 2020
Daily Herald

Rapper Vic Mensa: ‘The real looting is the looting of the body of George Floyd’ and other African Americans killed by police
Thursday, June 04, 2020
Chicago Sun-Times

‘We’re Here To Pray For Peace’: Faith Organizations March In Bronzeville To Protest George Floyd Killing
Wednesday, June 03, 2020
WBEZ News

The Spin: Politicians pivot to police reform | For Lightfoot, Preckwinkle and others, George Floyd death a painful reminder of racism in their lives | Chicago begins reopening
Wednesday, June 03, 2020
Chicago Tribune

‘COVID-19 Adjustment’ may lessen Cook County property taxes in light of pandemic
Wednesday, June 03, 2020
JD Supra

Coronavirus in Illinois updates: Here’s what’s happening Wednesday with COVID-19 in the Chicago area
Wednesday, June 03, 2020
Chicago Tribune

More positive results for antiviral drug remdesivir in battle against COVID-19
Wednesday, June 03, 2020
Chicago Tribune

Live Updates: Looting Causes Food Shortages; Security Firms See Spike In Demand
Wednesday, June 03, 2020
WBEZ

So many were killed by gunfire in Chicago Sunday, the medical examiner brought in extra pathologists for the autopsies
Wednesday, June 03, 2020
Chicago Tribune

Social distancing measures remain in place at county jail
Tuesday, June 02, 2020
Chicago Daily Law Bulletin

Protests and peace: Pritzker, Preckwinkle, Cupich call for ‘peaceful action’ to stem ‘contagion’ of racism
Tuesday, June 02, 2020
Chicago Sun-Times

With Dozens Being Shot Every Day, Anti-Violence Groups Continue Working Amid Looting And COVID-19
Tuesday, June 02, 2020
WBEZ News

Judge tells Cicero no more surprise visits at nursing home where more than a dozen died from coronavirus
Tuesday, June 02, 2020
Chicago Sun-Times

all news items

Paid for by Larry Suffredin and not at taxpayer expense. A Haymarket Production.
^ TOP