Testing for presence of coronavirus. Tube containing a swab testing for COVID-19.

Boyd County Sheriff Bobby Jack Woods said on Monday he had received a telephone call from an employee stating that they had tested positive for COVID-19.

The employee in question, a court security officer at the Boyd County Judicial Center in Catlettsburg, told Woods they had some mild allergy-like symptoms (sore throat and runny nose) on Tuesday, but by Saturday it had worsened to the point where the employee had gone to the hospital for treatment.

After being tested and receiving the results, the employee notified Woods. At that point, Woods notified Judge George Davis, and the other officers who worked in the general vicinity with the ill officer were tested.

“(The person is) currently self-isolating at home,” Woods said, “and is still just showing symptoms of a severe cold.”

Davis said that person works at the front desk. Other than the four other individuals at the front desk, court personnel were not in direct contact with this person.

Woods said all officers providing security, as well as all employees, have been following safety guidelines, including proper social distancing and the wearing of PPE throughout the limited reopening of the justice center.

“No one else has been showing any symptoms,” Woods said. “We don’t know whether the officer contracted this in-house or out in the general public, but we aren’t going to take any chances with the public safety. We are going to test everyone who works in the building and closely monitor for any symptoms.”

The other four officers who worked in proximity to the officer who tested positive were immediately tested themselves, and sent home until the results of those tests are known.

“We have to respond as though it came from inside the facility,” Woods said. “As of today, no one has shown any symptoms at all, but we need to know for sure.” Woods said everyone wishes the sick officer a quick recovery.

The court security officers, Woods said, have no direct contact with any of the other officers in the sheriff’s department, and work exclusively in the justice center. Currently, traffic into and out of the justice center is limited to officers of the court and those who have been subpoenaed by the court. Woods said even the payment of fines is recommended to be done using the payment box located outside of the building.

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