SEVIERVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — The Sevier County Sheriff’s Office announced Friday the suspension of on-site visitation, including volunteer ministries, at all SCSO corrections facilities until further notice.

The announcement comes as Sevier County in recent days has become a hot spot for COVID-19 cases; within the first three days of July, 111 tests results came back positive.

The sheriff’s office released the following statement:

Currently, at both facilities, we offer alternative opportunities with off-site visitation, tablet, phone, and kiosk access for our inmates to maintain communication with their family and friends. Also, all-volunteer ministries conducted at any SCSO Corrections facilities have been suspended until further notice.

The Sevier County Sheriff’s Office is following all CDC guidelines regarding routine environmental cleaning and sanitizing of our facilities. Our Staff is taking extra precautions by deep cleaning all of our facilities and assuring that all surfaces are disinfected around our Correctional facilities. All employees who are sick or symptomatic are being told to stay home until they are free of fever and/or cleared by medical staff. Our Medical staff at both Corrections facilities are completing medical prescreening procedures of all incoming arrestees before they are allowed to enter any of our Facilities.

When an arrestee is brought from another agency, the individual will be checked using the same protocol before intake into our facilities. During the prescreening process, we are taking the appropriate pre-planned measures to segregate any inmate who exhibits the symptoms and signs of COVID-19 to ensure the rest of the inmate population will not be exposed. If an individual has a confirmed case of COVID-19, we will follow state protocol and requirements.

SCSO Corrections staff have been issued the necessary PPE to be used during this trying and dangerous time.

Sevier County Sheriff’s Office

The Sevier County Sheriff’s Office operates two correctional facilities in Sevierville: The Sevier County Jail located at 137 Commerce Street and the Sevier County Jail (Annex) located at 896 Old Knoxville Highway.