Kentucky inmates will be released in response to coronavirus outbreak

FRANKFORT, Ky. — Gov. Andy Beshear’s administration said Kentucky will release nearly 200 prisoners in response to the coronavirus crisis.

Executive Cabinet Secretary J. Michael Brown said the governor signed an order to shorten the sentences of 186 inmates determined to be more susceptible to contracting the virus.

“This is lightening the load on our corrections system while at the same time protecting the most vulnerable who are in our corrections system,” Beshear said.

Beshear said the inmates were convicted of non-violent offenses. Brown said the prisoners will be screened to ensure they’re not showing symptoms of the virus before their release.

“We have pre-identified a group of now 743 where if we complete our screening processes next week, these are all individuals who are in six months of completing their sentence,” Brown said.

The early release does not mean the felons have been pardoned.

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The governor also recommended that school closings continue until early May. Beshear reported 100 new coronavirus cases statewide and 11 more virus-related deaths. 

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