Law Enforcement and Cities Close Access Amid Concerns of Coronavirus Exposure
TWIN FALLS, Idaho (KLIX)-Law enforcement offices and municipalities are making changes to avoid as much person to person contact to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus, some closing for several weeks.
The Twin Falls County Sheriff's Office announced changes to limit the potential spread of the virus by closing the jail lobby off to the public and has made changes to how deputies respond to calls as well as closed the Motor Vehicle Department.
Sheriff Tom Carter said in a statement, “Our goal is to continue to provide the best possible services to our residents with the guidance and advice of our Public Health District and the CDC. Our offices will remain open during this time as we continue to monitor the situation in our community closely.”
The following are specific changes the Twin Falls County Sheriff's Office made:
- Deputies will be limiting in person responses whenever it is deemed appropriate.
-All non-emergent requests will be initially answered by phone contact.
-Emergency responses will not change.
-Deputies will continue to patrol and be a presence in communities.
-New in-custodies will be medically assessed before entering the facility.
-The jail lobby will be closed to the public. Video visits will need to be conducted using home computers.
-All programming for inmates will be suspended temporarily.
• This office will be closed with a few exceptions (please see the attached release).
• Concealed weapons licensing will be closed.
• Offender registrations and meetings will continue by appointment only.
Meanwhile, the city of Twin Falls and Jerome have also taken steps to limit contact with people at their offices. Twin Falls has suspended walk-in payments at City Hall and have asked the public to use the payment drop box, mail them, or use their online payment service. The city has also suspended some indoor recreation programs such as adult basketball, youth wrestling, and karate along with other programs.
Jerome will close off access to a number of buildings and offices beginning Wednesday and will be reevaluated at the end of the month. According to the city, all access to the following will be closed to the public:
Fire Department Station 2
Wastewater Treatment Plant
Jerome Animal Shelter
Jerome Public Library
The city of Jerome says most staff will be available by phone if needed, you can find the directory HERE. The Jerome Police Department will have restricted access and can be reached at 208-324-4328 for non-emergency situations. Always call 911 in the case of an emergency.
The city of Gooding has also closed off access to City Hall and all payments will be made over the phone.