May 29, 2020
COVID-19 TDCJ Update
The Texas Department of Criminal Justice regrets to inform you of the deaths of four offenders likely connected to the coronavirus.
74-year-old Jester III Unit offender Edward Chandler Hughes Jr. May 25th. Hughes tested positive for COVID-19 on May 17th and was transferred to Hospital Galveston. He suffered from a number of pre-existing medical conditions. His family declined an autopsy, but COVID-19 is presumed to be a contributing cause of his death. Hughes had served 48 years of a life sentence from Dallas County.
David Uhrich died May 19th at Hospital Galveston. He was 60 years old. He was transferred from the Pack Unit in Navasota on May 13th. Uhrich tested positive for the COVID-19 virus. He suffered from a number of pre-existing medical conditions. Preliminary autopsy results suggest COVID-19 as a possible cause of death. Uhrich had served 1 year and 9 months of a five-year sentence out of Travis County.
79-year-old Harvey Lee Wendt died May 25th at Hospital Galveston. He was transported from the Jester III Unit in Richmond to the hospital on May 8th. Family declined an autopsy but COVID-19 is presumed to be a contributing cause of death since Wendt had tested positive for the virus. Wendt had served 31 years of a 45-year sentence out of Harris County.
Bernard Ferguson died May 25th at Hospital Galveston. He was hospitalized from the Goree Unit on May 6th. Ferguson had tested positive for COVID-19 and the preliminary results of an autopsy suggest that the virus was a contributing cause of his death. Ferguson had served 43 years of a life sentence out of Bell county.
In total there have been 55,882 offenders and 18,338 employees tested. 5,469 offenders and 879 staff have tested positive. 1410 offenders and 351 staff have recovered. There have been 36 offender deaths connected to COVID 19 with an additional 30 under investigation. There have been 7 employee line of duty deaths from COVID-19.
The Strike Team oral swab testing of offenders and employees of the Texas Department of Criminal Justice is moving quickly. As of Friday May 28th, 2020, the teams have collected 51,336 offender tests and 13,983 employee tests.
Collection of tests is complete at the Clements, Darrington, Eastham, Ellis, Estelle, Fort Stockton, Garza East, Gist, Gurney, Holliday, Hughes, Huntsville, Hutchins, Jester III, LeBlanc, Lopez, Lychner, Lynaugh, Michael, Middleton, Murray, Ney, Pack, Robertson, Sanchez, Segovia, Smith, Stiles, Telford, Terrell, Woodman, and Wynne units.
Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) - News Updates COVID-19
Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) - Texas Case Counts Map
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)- Coronavirus (COVID-19)
CDC Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) - World Map