COVID-19 cases at federal prison in Butner jump from 9 to 59 in five days

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OXFORD, N.C. (WNCN) — Health officials Monday said that nearly 60 people have tested positive for COVID-19 in an outbreak at the federal prison complex in Butner.

Lisa Macon Harrison, director of Granville Vance Public Health, said that within the 59 cases reported at the prison there could be duplicates.

She added that most of the cases were among inmates, not staffers.

The current number is a dramatic rise since just nine cases were reported five days ago.

Harrison said that there were currently 76 COVID-19 cases in Granville County, which includes the prison. There are 12 cases in Vance County, she said.

The U.S. Bureau of Prisons website currently lists 4,703 inmates at the various buildings in the prison complex. Harrison said that the cases at the Butner prison represent an outbreak.

The Bureau of Prisons posts numbers of COVID-19 cases on its website, but Harrison noted the numbers there Monday were several days old.

No deaths have been reported in either county.

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