A Santa Fe County sheriff’s deputy tested positive for the novel coronavirus, prompting tests on seven employees the deputy might have exposed.
The deputy, who’s now in quarantine, was tested Thursday after notifying supervisors of a possible infection from an event outside of work, said Juan Ríos, a sheriff’s office spokesman.
“This is the only deputy who has [ever] tested positive,” Ríos said.
The deputy did not work any shifts between the time of attending the event and testing positive, which means there’s no chance the deputy spread the virus to members of the public while on the job, Ríos said.
However, the deputy came into contact with seven sheriff's office employees, four of whom are deputies, Ríos said.
They are in quarantine while they await test results, he added.
In the meantime, some deputies might have to patrol and respond to calls in areas the absent deputies normally cover, Ríos said.
The infected deputy and anyone else who may test positive won’t return to work until tests show they’ve fully recovered and the state Department of Health clears them, Ríos said.
Areas in the office where the deputy worked, such as the briefing room, were disinfected, he added.
Sheriff’s office employees, including the agency's nearly 100 deputies, are required to wear face masks, whether working in the office or in the field, Ríos said.
“Every step of the way, public Health Department guidelines will be followed,” he said.