At least 24 have tested positive for COVID-19 at Hamilton County jails

Staff photo by Doug Strickland / The cells of a ward are seen Tuesday, June 30, 2015, at the Silverdale Correctional Facility in Chattanooga.

At least two dozen inmates and employees have tested positive for COVID-19 in Hamilton County jails, though the full count is unknown.

Numbers provided by the Hamilton County Sheriff's Office in response to a Times Free Press request on Thursday show that 10 inmates, five employees and one contract employee at the Silverdale Detention Facility have active COVID-19. They have been quarantined per Hamilton County Health Department and U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines.

When asked the same day, CoreCivic, the private company that operates the Silverdale facility, reported that an additional six staff members had previously been diagnosed with COVID-19 and have since recovered have from the virus, totaling 12 known cases among 160 employees. The company declined to provide a total number of past and present cases among inmates.