The Beaver County Jail will no longer be accepting federal Immigration & Customs Enforcement (ICE) detainees as the facility begins implementing its contagious disease protocols in response to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). The jail currently reports no known active cases of the virus.
“We are continuing to implement the first phase of our jail policy and procedures in regards to contagious diseases,” wrote Warden Bill Schouppe in an email to county commissioners this morning.
“For over a month now the medical staff have been screening all new commitments by gathering information and we DO NOT currently have any known active cases within the jail.”
In the email provided to BeaverCountian.com by county commissioners, Schouppe told the board he has informed ICE and US Marshalls the jail is “suspending new commitments from their agencies until further notice.”
The Beaver County Prison Board agreed to start housing ICE detainees for the first time in 2018. The jail earned about $150,000 from the Justice Department in 2018, the last year data was immediately available, for temporarily housing more than 300 detainees. That money went into the county’s general fund.
Schouppe told the board he has also begun suspending other jail programs in accordance with policies.
“We will be suspending all volunteer programs within the jail and suspending the volunteer training we do every spring,” Schouppe wrote.
Commissioner Chairman Dan Camp told BeaverCountian.com the board supports Schouppe’s actions.
“Warden Schouppe is executing the first phase of his plan,” Camp said. “We are confident in his decisions and we will continue to take every precaution.”
The Beaver County Criminal Justice Advisory Board will be holding a meeting on Monday to discuss issues surrounding COVID-19 which could affect the criminal justice system in Beaver County.