Wilmington Police Officer is Third City Employee to Test Positive for the Coronavirus

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The employee notified Police Chief Tracy on Saturday of the test result; the employee has not been at work since March 15 and is home in self-isolation.

Wilmington (DE): A Wilmington Police Officer is the third Wilmington employee to test positive for the coronavirus (COVID-19)  according to a news release from the Mayor’s office. “The officer, who has not been at work at police headquarters on Walnut Street since March 15 and is home in self-isolation, informed Chief Robert J. Tracy on Saturday of the test result.”

The Mayor said after the Police Chief learned of the positive test, he and staff retraced the officer’s movements more than two weeks ago within police headquarters to determine if other officers or civilian staff could have been affected. The Chief consulted with City Human Resources and with State Public Health and was advised that no special cleaning or decontamination was needed within the building. The officer who tested positive did not have duties that took him outside police headquarters to interact with the public.

As an extra precaution, Mayor Purzycki said the City is deep cleaning the area where the officer worked with virus-killing materials, the same process that was used in the past week or so to protect employees and the public at the Redding Government Building on French Street and at the Municipal Complex on Wilmington Avenue.

Chief Tracy issued a memo to department staff Saturday night to inform them of the officer’s positive test for Covid-19 and to remind and reassure staff of the cleaning and disinfecting steps that are being taken daily to protect staff within the police headquarters and officers who work outside the building.

Mayor Purzycki said the City will continue to act swiftly to protect its employees and the public as the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic evolves and as the world health crisis continues to affect the City, state, region, and nation.

Photo: DHSS

Previously, there was a Public Works Department employee who tested positive on March 13th. The employee is home in self-quarantine. Thirteen other employees who interacted with the employee over the past few days are also home in self-quarantine.

Then on March 23rd, a second employee tested positive for COVID-19. That employee was a Department of Licenses and Inspections employee and informed the City that they have tested positive for the coronavirus. The employee had not been at work since March 13 according to a news release.

We’ve reached out to the Mayor Purzycki’s office for a follow up but as of the publishing of this story, we have not heard back from his office.

To date, Delaware has had a total of 232 positive cases. According to state data, nine of those have made a recovery and six have died. In an earlier news release, the state said that most of the deaths was a result of patients with underlying health conditions. Of the 232 cases, 141 are from New Castle County, 25 from Kent County, and 66 from Sussex County. There are also 30 people hospitalized with coronavirus (COVID-19) and nine of those who are hospitalized are in critical condition.


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