PITTSBURGH, Pa. – (WPMG) Newsrooms across Western Pennsylvania received an email this afternoon regarding dangerous online rumors about the release of certain inmates from Allegheny County Jail. In short, these rumors are being quashed and dismissed.
–A rumor that High-Risk inmates will be released is false.
–A rumor that infected inmates will be released is also false.
Amie Downs, the Director of Communications offers the following statement with comments about these rumors:
Rumors and misinformation can be destructive and can even cause harmful behaviors that increase personal and public health risks. We have worked hard to ensure that the public has the most reliable information and balanced the need for transparency with private health considerations throughout this process.
The rumors currently being spread about the jail, whether purposefully or unknowingly, are irresponsible and dangerous. Announcements related to what steps are being taken at the jail to address COVID-19 concerns have been made on an ongoing basis since mid-March and are also posted on the jail’s webpage. The Courts have even issued data and information regarding the release process to address misinformation being spread (attached). We announced last week that an employee had tested positive for COVID-19 and shared information regarding that individual’s contact with colleagues and inmates.
The safety of the staff and inmates at the facility is our main focus. We will continue to take every precaution necessary to mitigate the potential impact of the virus at our facility.
Conversations with multiple county stakeholders, including the Allegheny County Health Department (ACHD), are held on an ongoing basis to ensure the most up-to-date information regarding epidemiology and risk. On a continual basis, we’re evaluating our policies and following the guidance provided by ACHD, the PA Department of Health, the PA Department of Corrections, and the CDC. We will continue to make adjustments as recommended by these experts to ensure the safety of our employees and inmates.
Amie M. Downs
Director of Communications