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UPDATE: HCSO taking steps to protect employees, inmates, and citizens from the spread of coronavirus

For Immediate Release : Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office
Release Number: 20-079



UPDATE: HCSO taking steps to protect employees, inmates, and citizens from the spread of coronavirus

Sheriff Chad Chronister and the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office remain proactive in protecting its employees, inmates and our residents as the coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to impact our community.

"We know the coronavirus has many people on edge, but take comfort in the fact that the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office is prepared and ready to help in any way that we can," said Sheriff Chad Chronister. "Our employees and the community we serve are our top priority. We will continue to take the measures necessary to ensure the health and safety of everyone in Hillsborough County."

The commercial-grade sanitization process of all HCSO facilities has been completed. Daily disinfecting will continue at all five HCSO district offices, the Sheriff's Operations Center, the Falkenburg and Orient Road jails, and office spaces. We continue to provide hand sanitizer and gloves to employees, which are available to them at the HCSO warehouse.

The Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office has also revamped the way it responds to calls during this time. Dispatchers will triage calls that come in and reports for non-critical calls may be taken over the phone. In other cases, the person calling HCSO will be asked to meet the deputy in an open-air space, such as the front yard, so the report can be taken.

When inmates are brought into the jail, the arresting officer will be asked a series of questions about the arrestee's travel history and if the arrestee is displaying any symptoms of coronavirus. If the arrestee is at risk for carrying coronavirus, a deputy will dress in personal protection equipment to transport the inmate to an area of the jail where they can not infect any other inmates or staff and receive any necessary medical treatment. HCSO's video visitation continues for the family and legal staff of inmates. Video visitation is accessible from home or a remote computer for the convenience of family and legal staff. You can sign up at

The Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office is also allowing for misdemeanor probation checks to be made over the phone. Court services will be changing as of Tuesday, including first appearance court to protect our inmate population. The Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office is working with State Attorney's Office, Hillsborough County Public Defender and Court Administration to assist with a smooth transition.

Sheriff Chad Chronister continues to educate employees about how to stay safe and healthy. He has released several internal messages informing staff and law enforcement about the proactive steps that are being taken to protect them and tips they can follow to keep themselves healthy.