Ex-Woodbourne Correctional inmate shares struggles to control COVID-19 behind bars
A former prison inmate spoke to News 12 Thursday about the conditions behind bars during the pandemic.
Timothy Crawford, a former inmate at Woodbourne Correctional Facility in Sullivan County, tells News 12 he caught COVID-19 at the facility in December.
Crawford was released this month after serving his sentence for robbery. While sick, he lost his sense of taste and smell.
Crawford says the state prison system is struggling to control the virus. He tells News 12 that he wasn't quarantined alone when he was sick because so many inmates tested positive at the time. Crawford says he shared a bunk with another person.
"The whole social distance thing. It's impossible. I mean you're around 700 individuals...1,200 individuals I mean, we was prone," says Crawford. "It was just a matter of time."
According to the Department of Corrections and Community Supervision, Woodbourne had 225 inmates test positive as of Tuesday. Two inmates have died.
Statewide the number of inmates testing positive surpassed 4,500 this week.
The Department of Corrections and Community Supervision says it's following all state Department of Health guidelines and working hard to protect both inmates and staff.