Marshall County Sheriff’s Office employees test for COVID, cancel holiday programs

Sheriff's Office impacted by COVID-19

GUNTERSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - The Marshall County Sheriff’s Office has been hit with COVID-19.

More than a dozen staff members have tested positive.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, 20 Marshall County Sheriff’s Office employees have tested positive for COVID-19. That includes deputies, investigators, corrections officers, and administrative employees.

Sheriff Phil Sims said as of now, they have 9 employees out and 11 employees who have returned to work.

“I can report that they are back at work and they are well, they didn’t have any major issues. One deputy had to be hospitalized just to be on the safe side because he was sick with pneumonia along with the COVID and he has since been released at home and is recovering. He should be back to work next week,” said Sheriff Sims.

Due to COVID restrictions and increasing cases, the Sheriff’s Office canceled their annual awards banquet and Operation Brown Elf program.

Sheriff’s Office Chaplain and Secretary of Treasurer Richard Bartley said they will alter their Shop With a Cop program.

This year, 50 students from Marshall County will be given $150 gift cards to purchase gifts for Christmas, instead of going out with a deputy to shop.

“This is a national program and it’s been documented that the time they spend with the officer affects them through the rest of their life. So we try to portray that positive image with the children,” said Bartley.

Most importantly, Sheriff Sims said his office will operate normally, follow safety measures and continue to serve and protect the people in Marshall County.

“It is a virus, we can’t stop it, but we are going to have to learn how to live with it. We have great news coming out on vaccines and I know you all are aware of it. We will get through this, and I think we will be just fine,” said Sheriff Sims.

Sheriff Sims said he, nor any Marshall County inmates have tested positive for coronavirus.

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