Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction

489 inmates and 184 staff in Ohio’s prisons have tested positive for COVID-19. More than 32,000 inmates in 20 of Ohio’s 28 prisons are under full quarantine. And now the head of the union representing those workers is too.

a photo of the hands of someone behind bars

Gov Mike DeWine says an inmate at the Pickaway Correctional Institution has died from coronavirus. Last week, a corrections officer at the Marion Correctional facility succumbed to COVID19. And hundreds of other inmates and staff members at the state’s lockups have tested positive for the virus. A dozen prisons are in full quarantine but some say the state isn’t doing enough to deal with the problem.

Gov. Mike DeWine has recommended more than 200 prisoners be released.

a photo of Annette Chambers-Smith

Gov. Mike DeWine has put off all upcoming executions until a new lethal injection method is developed, which he said will happen in the coming weeks. But the head of the prisons agency said it won’t be rushed. 

DeWine ordered the Department of Rehabilitation and Correction to come up with a new method after a federal judge ruled the existing three-drug combination is cruel and unusual punishment. DRC director Annette Chambers-Smith said it’s taking those workers a while to do that because it has to.

Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine is ordering the state to conduct monthly inspections of the Cuyahoga County Jail, threatening "additional legal action" if conditions at the facility don't improve.

The governor's office has also asked the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction to more than double the staff of the bureau that conducts jail inspections, according to a Thursday news release.

A photo of Andrew Bridges

Over the last seven years, Ohio’s been slowly changing a set of laws that many believe keeps people from getting jobs, paying child support, even volunteering in their community. In the first of two stories on Ohio’s official second chances, we examine how some of these changes are playing out.

Photo of lethal injection table

The Ohio Supreme Court has added a new inmate to the execution schedule – though Gov. Mike DeWine has delayed four executions until a new way to carry them out is developed. 

Cleveland skyline

Here are your morning headlines for Friday, January 4: