JDC closes after staff members test positive for virus

John Richmeier

The Juvenile Detention Center in Leavenworth was closed a couple of weeks ago after employees tested positive for COVID-19.

Staff members have returned to the facility. But the JDC likely will not begin accepting juveniles into the facility until next week, Leavenworth County Sheriff Andy Dedeke said.

The Juvenile Detention Center houses juveniles from Atchison and Leavenworth counties. The two counties make up the state’s 1st Judicial District.

Dedeke said the facility was closed during the last week of July after a couple of staff members tested positive for the virus.

He said JDC employees were tested after one of them potentially was exposed to the virus through contact with a relative.

Dedeke said the decision was made to close the JDC after consultation with the Leavenworth County Health Officer Jamie Miller.

“He believed that was the best course of action,” Dedeke said.

The sheriff said two juveniles were being housed at the JDC at the time it was closed.

One was from Atchison County, and officials from that county made arrangements for the juvenile.

The other juvenile was from Leavenworth County. The juvenile was transferred to a detention facility in Wyandotte County.

Dedeke said this juvenile also was tested for COVID-19 and the results were negative.

The sheriff said no additional cases have developed among employees of the JDC.

“Everybody has been cleared and has since returned to work,” he said.

Dedeke said juveniles are not yet being accepted to the facility because of a floor repair project that is taking place in the unit where juveniles are housed.

Dedeke said this project had already been scheduled prior to the confirmation of COVID-19 cases among staff. The project likely will be completed by the end of next week.

For now, employees are spending their time disinfecting the facility as well as painting and other maintenance work.

Twitter: @LVTNewsJohnR