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Minor at Santa Maria Juvenile Hall tests positive for COVID-19 upon intake


SANTA MARIA, Calif. - Chief Probation Officer Tanja Heitman reported Monday that a youth housed in the Santa Barbara Probation Department’s Santa Maria Juvenile Hall (SMJH) recently tested positive for COVID-19.

Heitman explained the minor was tested upon entry as part of the normal booking process. The youth was then placed in the Intake Unit while waiting for test results, minimized exposure to staff and cutting off all exposure to other minors in the facility.

Since receiving positive results, the youth has reportedly been transferred to a Medical Observation Unit for monitoring. At this time, the individual is experiencing no symptoms.

All probation and support staff assigned to the Intake and Medical Observation Units are required to wear full PPE including mask, goggles, gloves and gown.

While the youth’s contacts with others were minimal, the Department said it will be testing all staff that interacted with the youth as a precaution and is coordinating contact tracing and testing with the Public Health Department.

For more information about the County of Santa Barbara Probation Department, visit

For updates and breakdowns of COVID-19 cases throughout Santa Barbara County, click here.

Article Topic Follows: Santa Maria - Lompoc - North County

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Jessica Brest

Jessica Brest is a digital journalist and assignment editor for NewsChannel 3-12. To learn more about Jessica, click here.


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