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  • Writer's pictureStacey Borden

So Far, More Than 300 Prisoners Released Due To COVID-19 Under Mass. High Court's Ruling

State prisons and county jails in Massachusetts have released 367 prisoners after this month's state Supreme Judicial Court ruling on reducing incarceration because of the coronavirus.

Of them, 59 left Worcester County facilities, which saw the highest concentration of prisoners released. Those numbers were released Tuesday in a report from the high court. But the report suggested little coronavirus testing is being done of either prisoners or correctional staff. The report — which is due out weekly — was drawn up by the SJC-appointed "special master," an attorney overseeing the process for releasing prisoners in Department of Correction prisons and county jails overseen by state sheriffs. The report was required as part of the April 3 SJC ruling that said some prisoners could seek release amid the pandemic, such as those held pre-trial and those in custody on technical parole and probation violations. In aggregate, the report said jails released 296 prisoners in the past week. During that time, county jails — which hold more than 6,700 people — tested 338 prisoners and staff with 116 people testing positive for COVID-19. Read More HERE

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