Families see little progress in helping inmates at risk of COVID-19 in Alabama prisons

Coronavirus

LOXLEY, Ala. (WKRG) — Family members of Alabama state prison inmates say little is being done to ensure their safety during the coronavirus pandemic. This as Alabama saw a spike in COVID-19 cases this past week. It’s been two months since we last spoke with Kylie Herring. Her fiance Dylan Hendricks is serving time at the Loxley Work Release Center for manufacturing a controlled substance. She says he’s severely asthmatic and COVID-19 could be deadly.

“Realistically we’re not planning a wedding anymore, we’re planning on him dying and that’s really hard and we’ve given up for reaching out for miracles at this point,” said Herring during a Zoom interview Saturday morning. “We don’t have anything to do except keep praying that he comes home, our world’s going to stop turning if he’s not.” Even after more than two months of a public plea for a change, she says they’ve made no progress.

“We’ve taken out life insurance, burial policies because he’s seen a lot of symptomatic inmates in his close quarters,” said Herring. She says her fiance has continued to be a model inmate to no avail.

“He’s worked hard, he’s continued to pass drug tests he’s continued to maintain his clean record he’s done everything he’s supposed to do but more thrown in his way, it’s a struggle to see him do well and almost get a death sentence for nothing,” said Herring. She says an early June parole date came and went with no hearing and says inmates in Hendrick’s block have been removed for illness only to return days later.

We’ve also reached out to a spokesman for the Alabama Department of Corrections but haven’t heard back at this time. Back in April AL.com reported an internal document from the Department Corrections that said the prison system is underprepared to control the spread of COVID-19.

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