Monday, May 20, 2024

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Sheriff curtails administrative functions as COVID-19 spreads through top ranks

Sheriff’s office expected to be closed for rest of week


The office of Alamance County’s sheriff has suspended most of its administrative operations this week due to a rash of coronavirus inflections among its top brass.

The agency initially shuttered its front office at 12:00 noon on Friday after a handful of its administrators tested positive for COVID-19. According to sheriff Terry Johnson, a total of nine administrative staff members had been ordered to stay home as of Monday because they had either contracted the virus or had been in close contact with someone who had.

“Thankfully, everybody seems to be doing okay,” the sheriff said in an interview Monday.  “But we can’t issue [pistol purchase] permits. We can’t issue conceal and carry permits, and the people who are calling in with problems don’t have anybody to answer the phone.”

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Johnson, who has managed to dodge the infection himself, was one of the few administrators still at his post on Monday afternoon. The sheriff spent much of his time at the office turning away visitors who were unaware of the closure, although he was able to assist a few people – including one couple who dropped in around lunch time to pick up gun permits that had already been processed.

Johnson said that he hopes to have the rest of his administrative staff back in the office by this time next week.

“Everybody who tested negative will be retested on Thursday,” he added, “and we should be back open on Monday.”


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