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ACLU sues to protect Arizona county jail inmates from virus

Virus Outbreak Arizona
Posted at 9:34 PM, Jun 16, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-17 00:34:54-04

PHOENIX (AP) — The American Civil Liberties Union has filed a federal lawsuit against Maricopa County Sheriff Paul Penzone and his office demanding the release of medically vulnerable inmates from the county's jails.

The lawsuit filed Tuesday on behalf of the nonprofit Puente Human Rights Movement and inmates with conditions like diabetes and lung disease comes as positive cases of the coronavirus among Maricopa County jail inmates have surged past the number at state prisons.

A sheriff's office spokeswoman says the agency cannot comment on pending litigation.

Officials say 356 of Maricopa County's 4,400 inmates had tested positive by Friday compared to 252 confirmed cases among nearly 41,000 Arizona prison inmates.