LUBBOCK, Texas — The coronavirus has caused changes within the Lubbock County Detention Center. Staff at the facility spoke to Captain Kathleen Finley with the Lubbock County Sheriff’s Office about adjustments, and their newfound reliance on technology.
“I don’t think we ever imagined using tablets and quite to the level that we’re having to do it, but we definitely adjusted,” Finley said.
Inmates are now using tablets to attend court hearings.
“it is helped inmates processes continue on and helped us avoid delays in the courts,” Finley said.
Additionally, inmates between the ages of 17 and 18 have the option to use tablets in an effort to allow them to graduate high school on time.
Visiting guidelines have also changed, transitioning to optional video chats and phone calls with inmates attorneys, end extending free phone calls for family members. In-person public visits are not allowed at this time.
“That has been limited and suspended through executive orders through the state,” Finley said.
Although prisons within the state of Texas are mass testing for the coronavirus, short term facilities such as the Lubbock County Detention Center are not. Instead, their inmates are tested based on if they are symptomatic or have been around someone with COVID-19.
Some inmates have also volunteered to make masks for folks within the facility. To see the effort, go to the Lubbock County Sheriff’s Office Facebook page.