With deaths of prison staffers, Ohio increases its footprint with system overrun with COVID-19

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COLUMBUS, Ohio — Ohio has more coronavirus infections in its prison system than any other state, according to data compiled by the Associated Press and The Marshall Project, a non-profit newsroom that focuses on criminal justice.

365体育外围投注While the figures are based on limited testing and were last updated a week ago, the figures show that Ohio trails only New York and Texas when it comes to another category — the number of prison staffers who have become infected during the coronavirus pandemic.

This week, Ohio moved up in another category — tying New York and trailing Texas — with the number of prison staffers who have died from the disease, according to a 10 Investigates review of the data.

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Texas leads the nation with seven deaths of prison staffers. Ohio and New York both have four.

The Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction confirmed the news this week that two corrections staffers died this week from complications of COVID-19: Bernard Atta and DeWane Gannon. Both men worked at the Correctional Reception Center in Orient.

Their deaths marked the third and fourth deaths of corrections staffers in Ohio since the pandemic began.

365体育外围投注10 Investigates spoke this week to two of Atta’s children and a co-worker of Gannon, Rick Daily.

After immigrating to the United States from Ghana, Bernard Atta spent eight years here working as a nurse at the Corrections Receptions Center in Orient.

“The Saturday before he passed away, we actually thought that he was getting better. (He) didn’t wake up the next day,” said his son, Kojoh Atta.

His son, Kojoh Atta, says his father tested positive May 9 and died at home — 8 days later.

Kojoh says he is almost certain his father became infected at work.

Bernard’s daughter, Nana Agyeman, told us by phone that her father was a gentleman, dedicated and not one to call off adding: “For this to happen when you are trying to care for others is heartbreaking. We are in so much pain.”

Rick Daily, a co-worker and union representative of, DeWane Gannon, told 10 Investigates:

365体育外围投注“When you think of a true friend or a man you can count on, that would be DeWane Gannon. He brightened everybody with just his presence. He will be sorely missed.”

365体育外围投注The struggle inside Ohio’s prison initially was at first a lack of personal protective equipment that has been coupled with the fact that social distancing is practically impossible in congregate settings like these.

365体育外围投注After learning his father was infected, Kojoh started relief funds for Columbus and Detroit — two areas hard hit by COVID-19. Now he’s started a third go-fund-me page to help cover funeral costs.

“I am definitely shocked and sad by the death of my dad and three other workers in the correctional facility — I’m also thinking of the inmates as well because regardless of what they did, they were tried by a jury of their peers and they were sentenced to a punishment other than suffering and dying of COVID.”

Coronavirus: What you need to know

There are now 33,501 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Ohio365体育外围投注; 1,993 people have died from the virus and 6,067 were hospitalized, according to the Ohio Department of Health.

For most people, the virus causes mild or moderate symptoms that clear up in a couple of weeks. Older adults and people with existing health problems are at higher risk of more severe illness365体育外围投注, including pneumonia, or death.

10TV is committed to bringing you a FACTS NOT FEAR approach to our coronavirus reporting. You can count on 10TV to give you the latest developments and the impacts on you and your family. For complete coverage, visit: brawleysrv.com/coronavirus.

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