3 Santa Rosa police officers test positive for COVID-19

Three Santa Rosa police officers have tested positive for the COVID-19 coronavirus and six other employees are self-quarantined, Santa Rosa Police Chief Ray Navarro said Tuesday afternoon.

One of the three officers who tested positive is a patrol officer who has limited contact with the public while at work, and another is a patrol officer assigned to a position in the Police Department who has not had contact with the public. Both officers received medical attention and are in stable condition, Navarro said.

The third is a detective who had limited contact with the public over the past two weeks during shifts, Navarro said.

Two of the officers tested positive on Friday and the third officer sought medical attention this week and tested positive Tuesday afternoon, Navarro said.

The six other employees, some officers and some civilians, self-quarantined in accordance with the Police Department's protocol that requires employees to self-quarantine when they show signs of illness or believe they have been exposed to someone who has the coronavirus, Navarro said.

Navarro mentioned the department's efforts that have been taken to prevent the spread of the virus.

The Police Department has created a team of employees to frequently sanitize "high touch" areas in the police department building, and it is expected that all work stations, patrol vehicles and an officer's safety equipment will be sanitized before and after use, Navarro said.

Police briefings have been shortened or canceled, trainings have been postponed and essential meetings are held by conference call or video conferencing. 

The Police Department is only staffed with essential employees and they limit face-to-face interactions when possible. The Police Department is not reducing staffing of patrol officers or dispatchers, and there will always be dispatchers who answer 911 calls, Navarro said.

There were 31 active coronavirus cases in the county as of Tuesday. One person has died and two people have recovered, according to the county's website.

Meanwhile, Oakland Police Department reported their third case of COVID-19 on Tuesday. An employee tested positive and is under self-quarantine. They are recovering and have not been to work since March 17.