Daughter of correctional center guard in Louisiana questions prison practices after losing father to Covid-19

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RICHWOOD, La. (05/01/2020) — For Brittany Lenard, the month of April has great meaning but is now marked with indescribable pain.

” [It’s] The day that my mom lost the person she’s been with since she was 13-years-old,” she said

Lenard’s father, Carl Lenard, 62, a guard at Richwood Correctional Center, started to get sick.

“He started getting a real bad fever and the fever progressed into a cough.”

Brittany Lenard, Victim’s daughter
Courtesy: Brittany Lenard

So he went to the doctor and was diagnosed with Covid-19 but at one point things started to get better.

“Friday he started looking good or feeling a little better and then Friday night he went to sleep,” Lenard said. Then she was met by her mother with bangs on her door to call 9-1-1.

“She was doing CPR and she flipped him over on his side and I could see the fluid coming from his mouth. Saturday morning at 2 a.m. He passed away.”

Brittany Lenard

Lenard and her family have questions they want answered.

“I remember him saying that initially they weren’t being allowed to wear the protective gear and then they weren’t providing them with protective gear.”

Brittany Lenard

KTVE/KARD reached out to LaSalle Corrections and asked specifically if this was true. We didn’t receive an answer.

Here’s what they did say:

LaSalle Corrections implemented our Pandemic contingency plan in response to COVID-19, that includes screening, testing, appropriate treatment, prevention, education, and infection control measures. There have been no significant disruptions to the orderly operation of the facility.

LaSalle Corrections has long formulated these  strategies and plans for responding to a pandemic. Our strategic planning ensures for continuity of operations and a sustainable health care delivery system within facility settings. Emergency services and advanced medical care is included in pandemic  planning. Focus is on operational and communications planning, reinforcing hygiene practices, intensifying cleaning and disinfection of  facility, and monitoring for potential cases.

LaSalle Corrections is also working closely with the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and other federal, state, and local agencies to facilitate and refine our pandemic planning and response in confronting COVID-19. LaSalle Corrections continues to work diligently to ensure employees are operating under the safest and most practical conditions to reduce the risk of exposure and prevent further spreading of COVID-19 during the course of daily operations.

The responsibility to protect those in our custody is paramount and LaSalle Corrections is firmly committed to the health and welfare of our staff and detained population.

Unfortunately, ICE has temporarily suspended social visitation in all of its detention facilities. We look forward to scheduling a media tour of the facility in the near future.

Scott Sutterfield, LaSalle Corrections

However, Lenard wants an investigation into the policies and protocols for private prisons during this pandemic.

Courtesy: Brittany Lenard

“These are human beings, so even if they’ve committed a crime or even if they’re an immigrant they still deserve some type of humanity,” she said.

For her family, they lost the best father in the world, so where do they go from here?

“That’s a really difficult question because my dad was the rock for all of us,” said Lenard.

Right now, it’s trying to make sure Carl’s wife Margarette and one of his other daughters recovers from Covid-19. Then, it’s laying their father to rest.

RCC currently has 60 detainees with confirmed cases of Covid-19. Those numbers are updated here.

For our original report click here.

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