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Health scare at Jefferson County Jail: Five deputies rushed to hospital



Jefferson County, Arkansas – Five deputies at the Jefferson County Jail were hospitalized on Wednesday after exhibiting various symptoms, including unconsciousness and chest pain. This incident has raised serious concerns about safety and health within the facility.

The situation unfolded around noon when two deputies fell unconscious, while others started experiencing chest pain and developing rashes. The cause of their sudden illness was unknown, leading to a rush of emergency responses. Fortunately, by Thursday, all affected deputies were able to return to work, although the mystery of what caused their symptoms remained unsolved.

Corporal Emanuel Hayes, one of the deputies affected, recounted his harrowing experience. Despite not feeling fully recovered, largely due to lack of sleep, he felt compelled to return to work to ensure the well-being of his fellow officers and the inmates in his charge.

The incident began when Hayes was sent to check a cell block after two inmates showed signs of sickness. Despite his efforts, Hayes couldn’t find any evidence of what caused the illness. While the inmates recovered quickly, the situation escalated when Hayes witnessed his sergeant fall unconscious and soon found himself in the same state. Recalling the incident, Hayes expressed his fear and concern, especially as he faced high blood pressure and uncertainty about his recovery.

All affected deputies were taken to Jefferson Regional Medical Center, with one investigator hospitalized as a precaution. Major John Bean, Operations Commander of the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office, mentioned an odor in the room and the possibility that something was smoked. Speculations arose about paper soaked in household chemicals, potentially smuggled in through legal mail, but nothing was confirmed.

Hospital tests failed to identify the substance that caused the illness. Hayes was even told at one stage that he was septic, indicating the severity of his condition. This incident has prompted the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office (JCSO) to look into preventive measures to avoid future occurrences.

Major Bean emphasized the importance of safety for law enforcement and inmates, expressing relief that the deputies were okay but acknowledging the frightening nature of the incident. The JCSO continues to search for contraband and evidence to determine the responsible party and bring them to justice.

For Hayes, this incident has had a profound impact on his perspective on life. It underscored the unpredictability and risks associated with law enforcement duties. He spoke about the importance of not taking anything for granted and the deeper appreciation for life he has gained through this experience.

As the investigation continues, the JCSO remains vigilant in its efforts to safeguard its staff and inmates, while the deputies involved in the incident recover from a situation that has left more questions than answers.

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