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COVID Outbreak At Tuolumne County Jail Leads To Early Release Of 13 Inmates

SONORA (CBS13) — Thirteen inmates will be released following a COVID-19 outbreak at the Tuolumne County Jail, authorities said Wednesday night.

The Tuolumne County Sheriff's Office said 16 inmates in three housing units tested positive for the virus. As a result, the sheriff's office will reduce the jail population to 50% to allow for safer conditions and adequate space.

The inmates that will be released were described as non-violent offenders and were within 30 days of the end of their sentence. The inmates were expected to be released by Thursday morning.

"The safety of our community is my number one priority," said Bill Pooley, Tuolumne County sheriff. "We are working to strike a balance between keeping our residents safe and ensuring that the inmates, who are under our care, are adequately treated for COVID-19."

The sheriff's office said it is working with the Department of Public Health to maintain quarantine procedures and testing protocols.

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