Advertisement

Four Tampa police officers test positive for coronavirus; more than 40 in quarantine

It’s unclear where the officers came into contact with the virus, a spokesperson said.
 
Clearwater Police officer Joseph Czop, on left, and Sgt. Meg Hasty, in center, both wearing protective face masks and gloves, check out a suspicious person call at a bus stop on the street on N. Betty Ln. on Thursday, April 9, 2020 in Clearwater. Law enforcement officers are facing a new array of challenges policing during a global pandemic. To limit face-to-face contact, agencies are now taking non-emergency reports over the phone, issuing more notices to appear in lieu of arrests and putting in place special protocols if they are dealing with someone believed to have or have been exposed to the virus. But even with these precautions, cops are still vulnerable of contracting the virus themselves or spreading it to residents, colleagues and their families. We've already seen it happen at Tampa PD, and several larger agencies across the country.
Clearwater Police officer Joseph Czop, on left, and Sgt. Meg Hasty, in center, both wearing protective face masks and gloves, check out a suspicious person call at a bus stop on the street on N. Betty Ln. on Thursday, April 9, 2020 in Clearwater. Law enforcement officers are facing a new array of challenges policing during a global pandemic. To limit face-to-face contact, agencies are now taking non-emergency reports over the phone, issuing more notices to appear in lieu of arrests and putting in place special protocols if they are dealing with someone believed to have or have been exposed to the virus. But even with these precautions, cops are still vulnerable of contracting the virus themselves or spreading it to residents, colleagues and their families. We've already seen it happen at Tampa PD, and several larger agencies across the country. [ DIRK SHADD | Times ]
Published June 15, 2020|Updated June 15, 2020

Four Tampa police officers tested positive for the novel coronavirus in the past week, bringing the total cases the department has seen since the start of the outbreak to seven.

The four officers are in quarantine, according to a news release issued by police Monday afternoon. Spokesperson Jamel Laneé said she couldn’t comment further on the officers’ health. Within the department, 46 people are in quarantine.

Related: Hillsborough continues steady increase in coronavirus cases.

One of the officers who tested positive is a school resource officer who started experiencing symptoms June 2 and tested positive for COVID-19 two days later, according to the release. The three other officers became symptomatic June 10, 11th, and 12th, and were placed on quarantine June 12.

It’s unclear where the officers, three men and one woman, came into contact with the virus, Laneé said. The department did not release any more information about the individual officers.

Related: Commissioner seeks face-covering ordinance for Hillsborough County

Others are being monitored by the department’s occupational nurse. The department is monitoring 31 officers for signs of symptoms. Three other officers who had tested positive for COVID-19 prior have returned to work, Laneé said.

Other law enforcement agencies and jails around the Tampa Bay area have been impacted by the pandemic. Last week, staffers and inmates tested positive for the virus at the Pinellas County Jail. In April, officers at the St. Petersburg and Clearwater police departments tested positive for COVID-19 and deputies at the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office were placed on quarantine.