Local jails taking steps to slow spread of COVID-19


NORTHERN WISCONSIN – As nonessential businesses statewide close temporarily and Wisconsinites follow Governor Tony Evers’s Safer at Home order to slow the spread of COVID-19, area jails are also taking steps to make sure inmates and correctional staff are protected from the virus.

Lincoln County Sheriff Ken Schneider and Oneida County Sheriff Grady Hartman each explained the steps they’ve taken to keep their respective jails safe.

“We have worked with District Attorney and the courts to reduce the number of incoming persons,” Schneider said. “We have a screening process for both employees and incoming inmates. We have a temporary freeze on transfers of prisoners that we house for other counties.”

Schneider said the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office has also taken steps to keep inmates separated as much as possible, and has worked to reduce the number of Huber inmates.

Hartman stated Huber has been cancelled in Oneida County, along with all outside visitors to the jail, including attorneys and probation agents. Other arrangements are being made, he said. Hartman also said no one except on-duty staff is allowed in the jail.

“No one can be booked in without administration approval,” Hartman explained. “We are doing some quarantine steps for high-risk people. We are working with our judges on pushing court dates off and quashing warrants where appropriate.”

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