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MCI-Norfolk Prisoner Death Presumed To Be COVID-Related

MCI-Norfolk. (Michael Norton/SHNS)
MCI-Norfolk. (Michael Norton/SHNS)

The Department of Correction says an incarcerated man who tested positive for COVID-19 has died, marking the ninth death of a Massachusetts prisoner related to the coronavirus.

The man was taken from MCI-Norfolk to a local hospital on Friday because of a medical emergency. The DOC said although the prisoner had tested negative for the virus last month and had passed recent COVID screenings at Norfolk, he tested positive at the hospital, where he died later that night.

The state medical examiner will determine the exact cause of his death.

The man, who the DOC is not identifying, was in 80s and had underlying health issues. He had been incarcerated since the 1970s.

COVID-19 cases have spiked at Norfolk and other state prisons over the past six weeks. The latest state reports indicate the largest recent increase in coronavirus cases is at MCI-Concord, with more than 160 prisoners recently testing positive, as well as about 50 correction officers. There are just over 500 men incarcerated at Concord.

The last prisoner death in Massachusetts related to COVID-19 was reported in May.

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Deborah Becker Twitter Host/Reporter
Deborah Becker is a senior correspondent and host at WBUR. Her reporting focuses on mental health, criminal justice and education.

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