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33 sheriff’s cadets contract coronavirus; San Bernardino program suspended

The training program for the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department has been suspended.
The training program for the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department has been suspended after nearly three dozen cadets tested positive for the coronavirus.
(San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department)

A training program for the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department has suspended in-person classes after 33 cadets tested positive for the coronavirus, officials said.

Twenty of those infected are deputy trainees, and 13 are from other law enforcement agencies, public information officer Jodi Miller said Thursday.

After two cadets showed symptoms of the virus last week, one tested positive for COVID-19. Within 48 hours, all 160 trainees in the program were tested. Most who tested positive had mild or no symptoms.

“No trainee showed a fever,” Miller said.

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The academy was suspended Friday. The program does not offer live-in training, meaning those in attendance left the location to return home every day and were potentially exposed to others outside the facility who may have been infected with the virus. The academy is typically held at the Sheriff’s Department’s Frank Bland Regional Training Center in Devore.

San Bernardino County has reported 230 coronavirus-linked deaths and 8,454 cases, 414 of which were reported Thursday.

For now, students will self-quarantine for about one more week while remote training is offered. Those who tested positive for the virus are being monitored by medical staff.

Students in the senior class, which began training Jan. 21, and the junior class, which began training March 30, have been required to wear face masks while on the premises.

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Temperature checks of trainees and academy staff have been taken daily, Miller said, and the facility was cleaned and disinfected throughout each day, with everyone having access to hand sanitizer.

Photos provided by the Sheriff’s Department show cadets wearing face coverings during a training exercise.


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