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Mecklenburg County Sheriff was ready to offer vaccine to protesters if arrested

Published: Apr. 23, 2021 at 7:00 PM EDT
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CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - Mecklenburg County Sheriff Garry McFadden was planning for protests to erupt in the streets of Charlotte after the Derek Chauvin verdict. He was also preparing for multiple arrests to take place. He planned to offer vaccinations to those arrested to help stop the spread of COVID-19.

Those arrested would have been isolated and offered the Moderna vaccine. Once released, they would get instructions on how to get the second shot.

“We’re going to give you a brochure of where to go to get your second shot,” Sheriff Garry McFadden said. “So we are actually still trying to help many people during this COVID crisis.”

McFadden says since no protests in Charlotte, he is still offering the Moderna vaccine. Since March 2020, 465 residents of the jail tested positive for COVID. The sheriff says family members of those in custody have mixed reactions about their relatives getting the shot.

“Actually we get family influence,” McFadden said. “Positive or negative. And so that’s the thing that we run into. So why wouldn’t you allow your loved ones to get a free vaccine while they are here?”

Mecklenburg County Commission Chair George Dunlap applauds the Sheriff’s effort.

“Anything we can do to reduce the number of people who can even potentially get COVID 19,” Dunlap said. “I think is a tremendous help.”

McFadden said on average about 60 people come in and out of the jail daily. He says there will be enough vaccines to go around. The sheriff’s office says it has about 100 doses of the Moderna vaccine on hand and expects to get a shipment once a week.

“It’s at no cost to you, so we are trying to protect our community in that way,” McFadden said.

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