LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — Over the weekend, there was another spike in COVID-19 cases at the Federal Medical Center (FMC) in Lexington, bringing the total to 127 positive cases as of Monday. The first inmate died from complications of the coronavirus on Monday as well.
On Monday morning, a small group of protesters gathered outside the FMC in an effort to have a date for release announced for their loved ones who have already been approved for home confinement.
One man has been behind bars for a drug charge since 2015. He has served more than 50 percent of his sentence and is currently at the FMC in Lexington.
His sister-in-law, who wanted to keep her name anonymous, stood outside in his defense Monday.
"Bad heart, diabetes, high blood pressure, I mean, come on. He's got every thing that says that you should have if you get this," she said.
The protesters are pleading with officials because they say their loved one was approved for home confinement weeks ago.
"This date is the only thing, hold him up. Just someone that is not signing the paperwork or whatever is holding him up," said the sister-in-law.
With inmate call privileges changed from 500 minutes a month to only 10 minutes twice a week, the time on the phone for some families is even more precious. They explained it is heartbreaking as well.
"He's just been showing a lot of concern, saying things are getting bad in there," said the wife of one prisoner, who also wanted her name to be anonymous. "Tensions are just getting really hot with the prisoners, you know, because the cases are multiplying so much."
"He says there's been, you know, plenty of fights broke out in there," said the sister-in-law. "There's been soap dispensers being jerked off the walls trying to get the last bit of soap out of containers.
She continued, "These are people. My brother [in law] didn't kill nobody. He doesn't deserve to die in there."