EDINBURG, Texas (KVEO) — They enforce the law, but with the recent spike in COVID-19, the Hidalgo County Sheriff’s Deputies had to step in to help.
Hidalgo County Sheriff Deputies are now informing residents if they tested positive for COVID-19.
“Sometimes these individuals are hearing that they tested positive for the first time from a deputy or from a constable or from one of the investigators from the DA’s office, because of the amount of positive COVID-19 tests we’ve had in recent days,” said Sgt. Frank Medrano with the Hidalgo County Sheriff’s Office.
Hidalgo County Sheriff Deputies along with constables with precinct offices and investigators with the District Attorney’s office are now going door to door of people that tested positive issuing communicable disease control orders.
“The purpose of this [communicable disease] control orders is to advise an individual that they need to stay at home. That they cannot have other individuals visiting their home or anyone outside of their primary household,” said Medrano.
If they do not listen, there are consequences.
“With these control orders, if a person is found in violation of this specific order, there is obviously a penalty, under our penal code which is a fine of up to $2,000 with up to 180 days in jail,” said Medrano, “It is a Class B Misdemeanor.”
The deputies call the person that tested positive and make arrangements to get paperwork over to them that explains rules they must follow.
After they sign, the deputies take the documents back to health officials.
“It’s difficult. We are short staffed with everything that’s been going on, but Sheriff Guerra is making the appropriate changes and arrangements so we can be able to facilitate assistance to the health department,” said Medrano.
Each sheriff’s deputy unit is sanitized daily, and deputies are trying to avoid face to face contact with residents, instead making plans to leave the documents elsewhere like the front porch or a car.
The Sheriff’s Department said the deputies are contacting residents through their work phones and not the main sheriff’s department line.
If you would like to confirm that it is a deputy calling you, you can always reach out to them at (956) 383-8114 to verify the deputy’s name.