A 43-year-old man incarcerated at the Minnesota Correctional Facility-Faribault died Tuesday, according to the state Department of Health.
The Hennepin County Medical Examiner is performing an autopsy to determine the cause of death.
The man, identified as Adrian Raymaar Keys, along with a number of other men incarcerated at Faribault, tested positive for COVID-19 on June 4. Keys’ condition deteriorated last weekend, he was hospitalized Monday. The medical examiner will determine the cause of death. If determined to be related to COVID-19 complications, this would be the first such death of a person incarcerated in Minnesota.
“We extend our deepest condolences to the family and friends of Mr. Keys,” Minnesota Department of Corrections Commissioner Paul Schnell said. “Since the start of the pandemic we’ve worked to take all reasonable steps to minimize the introduction and spread of COVID-19 in the state’s correctional facilities for the well-being of those we serve and our staff.”
The first case of COVID-19 in the Faribault correctional facility was reported on June 3. The Department of Corrections has since been conducting comprehensive testing of all incarcerated men and staff at the facility. More than 200 additional cases have been discovered since the first positive test, with the majority experiencing no symptoms. Three, including Keys, have required hospitalization for their symptoms. Two remain hospitalized — one in critical condition. Currently 1,734 men are incarcerated in the facility.
Rice County on Thursday reported 771 residents have tested positive for the novel coronavirus. That figure includes the 201 MCF-Faribault inmates. Four Rice County residents have died so far from COVID-19 complications.
Incarcerated individuals in the following DOC correctional facilities have tested positive for COVID-19: Moose Lake, Willow River, St. Cloud, Lino Lakes, and Faribault. Since the start of the pandemic the DOC has conducted 9,704 tests on incarcerated men, women, and youth. Additionally, 2,685 tests have been conducted on staff. Four staff members have been hospitalized related to COVID-19. All staff members hospitalized have since been released.
The DOC has taken a number of steps across the system to manage the risk of COVID-19 entering correctional facilities and spreading, including: implementing “Stay with Unit” plans, enacting mandatory barrier mask policies, and installing hand washing stations in each facility. Each facility has also taken a number of steps specific to the unique environment of each facility. Those plans can be viewed at bit.ly/2B0Su4I.
In addition, the DOC has implemented efforts to reduce facility population to aid virus containment strategies. As of June 25, the DOC had a population of 7,962 in the state’s prisons down from about 8,900 on March 1, 2020.