Kanawha County Circuit Court Chief Judge enters an order for enforcing positive patients to follow quarantine guidelines

On April 6, 2020, Kanawha County Circuit Court Chief Judge Charles E. King Jr. en- tered an order allowing the Kanawha County Sheriff’s Department, with the directive of Chief Health Officer Dr. Sherri Young of the Kanawha-Charleston Health Department, to issue GPS ankle monitoring bracelets to those who refuse to quarantine after testing positive for COVID-19. The Chief Health Officer currently has the authority to issue a quarantine order for those who refuse to quarantine. We have seen in other states, such as Kentucky, that many have refused to follow those quarantine orders. Kentucky re- cently issued an order for GPS ankle bracelets to be utilized as a last resort enforce- ment for those who refuse to be quarantined.

“Chief Judge King and Sheriff Rutherford have taken note that this is a serious issue. The public must realize that if you have COVID-19, you need to quarantine per the di- rection of the Chief Health Officer. We do not want to use the GPS ankle bracelets to enforce the quarantines, however, if we must we will. This must be taken seriously,” stated Commission President Kent Carper.

Commissioner Ben Salango commented, “Those who’ve tested positive for COVID-19 must comply with Dr. Young’s quarantine order. Unfortunately, it has come to our atten- tion that a few COVID-19 positive patients have ignored Dr. Young’s order and are jeop- ardizing the health of others. We must take all reasonable steps to protect the public from the spread of this virus.”

"We must do all that we can to slow the spread of COVID-19," said Mayor Amy Shuler Goodwin. "We have an obligation to keep the people of Charleston and Kanawha Coun- ty safe by any means necessary. This method would only be used in cases where folks that test positive are non-compliant. We must proactively have these measures in place in case we have individuals that will not quarantine."