Ga. prisons see major spike in COVID-19 cases

A significant spike in  COVID-19 cases hit Johnson State Prison, located in Wrightsville.

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A significant spike in  COVID-19 cases hit Johnson State Prison, located in Wrightsville.

The disease caused by the coronavirus may have peaked in Georgia but, inside the state’s prisons, COVID-19 is gaining steam at an alarming rate.

The virus claimed its fourth incarcerated victim on Saturday, a 74-year old inmate at Coastal State Prison. The offender, whose name was not released by the Georgia Department of Corrections, died of complications caused by COVID-19 at a Savannah hospital. Calhoun State Prison Deputy Warden Roger Hodge, a 22-year veteran of the DOC, is the only staff member to fall prey to the disease.

RELATED: Georgia jails and prisons remain crowded as COVID-19 spreads

Major outbreaks hit two more south Georgia prisons this weekend. Thirty-three new cases were confirmed at Autry State since Friday. Located in Pelham, near the Florida state line, Autry paced the state as of Monday night with 43 infections. Thirty nine are prisoners and, so far, none have recovered, according to the DOC.

Johnson State Prison in Wrightsville has also seen a significant uptick, with 25 offenders and four staff members now testing positive, the DOC reports.

Explore» COMPLETE COVERAGE: Coronavirus in Georgia

Since Friday, 90 new infections were recorded inside the state’s correctional facilities. The virus has invaded 31 of Georgia’s 34 penal institutions, infecting 154 prisoners and 75 staff members.