Watch CBS News

Coronavirus Update: New Jersey To Release COVID-19 Vulnerable Prisoners To Home Confinement Or Early Parole

TRENTON, N.J. (CBSNewYork) - New Jersey will be releasing some state prisoners whose age or health put them at risk for COVID-19 infection, putting them either in home confinement or on parole.

Gov. Phil Murphy announced the executive order during Friday's coronavirus update to "preserve this balance between health on the one hand, and public safety on the other."

Eligibility will also be determined for those who had been denied parole within the last year or whose sentences are set to expire within the next three months.

"I want to stress that no one convicted of a serious crime, such as murder, sexual assault, among others will be eligible for consideration," said Murphy.

MORE: Rikers Island Rate Of Infection 7 Times Higher Than Citywide, Legal Aid Says

Last month New Jersey's Supreme Court has ordered some county jail inmates to be released in an effort to slow the spread of the coronavirus.

CORONAVIRUS: NY Health Dept. | NY Call 1-(888)-364-3065 | NYC Health Dept. | NYC Call 311, Text COVID to 692692 | NJ COVID-19 Info Hub | NJ Call 1-(800)-222-1222 or 211, Text NJCOVID to 898211 | CT Health Dept. | CT Call 211 | Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

The order came the same day New Jersey saw an overnight jump of 3,627 new COVID-19 infections reported across the state, bringing the Garen State's coronavirus total to 54,588 cases.

Murphy also noted the state had 233 new deaths reported due to coronavirus-related illness, bringing the total to 1,932 deaths since the outbreak began.

PHOTO GALLERY: A Look Inside NYC's Viral 'Warzone'

Because of earlier reporting due to the Good Friday holiday, some of Friday's overnight numbers may increase, said Murphy.

"This weekend is Easter weekend, and I know is one where we are used to gathering together as we do normally at Passover," said Murphy. "We gathered normally at Easter to worship. We gather for children's Easter egg hunts, for family meals with friends.

"We can't do any of that this year," he said. "I feel awful but we can't. We have to leave the gathering to FaceTime or Zoom, or just simple phone calls and texts and emails to our family and friends. Instead of heading to church many of us will fire up our laptops for a live stream service. Staying apart this year is the surest way we'll be able to gather again next Easter in the many Easter's to come."

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.