On March 26, 2020, the Long Beach Police Department (LBPD) was notified that a police officer has tested positive for COVID-19, commonly known as the novel coronavirus. The total number of confirmed Long Beach cases is 70. The officer involved is a Long Beach resident and his case is included in the updated Long Beach totals.
The officer works in the West Patrol Division and was tested after exhibiting flu-like symptoms. The employee was directed to self-isolate, and the employee’s partner officer was also directed to self-quarantine during the 14-day incubation period. The origin of how the officer contracted the virus is under investigation.
“Our police officers are on the frontlines every day, bravely putting themselves in harm’s way to protect our community,” said Mayor Robert Garcia. “We are providing support to the impacted employees and their families and continuing our efforts to reduce the spread of COVID-19 in our city.”
The Long Beach Department of Health and Human Services is actively investigating details surrounding these exposures to better identify how to minimize further risk to the community, as well as other public safety and City personnel. The Police Department will continue to work with the Health Department to assist in their contact investigation. As the investigation progresses, appropriate notifications will be made to employees, community members and other individuals who may have been exposed.
“We recognize the potential impact of a positive test for a first responder,” said City Health Officer Dr. Anissa Davis. “We are committed to ensuring that this officer, and all of our confirmed positive cases, receive the necessary guidance and support to manage this health issue.”
Since learning of these positive test results, the City took the following actions:
- Notified additional City employees who may also have been exposed.
- Completed a deep cleaning of the West Division facility and designated police cars.
- Initiated the Health Department’s contact investigations and will be conducting additional testing as needed.
“We were very concerned to hear that one of our officers has tested positive for this virus,” said Chief of Police Robert G. Luna. “We have been preparing for this possibility and are working closely with our partners at the Health Department to provide additional information to all of our employees regarding this development.”
This news should not deter the public from calling 9-1-1 when needing emergency assistance. Long Beach Police and Fire Departments continue to take extensive precautions to safeguard community members and other emergency personnel. The City’s public safety dispatchers are asking additional COVID-19 screening questions for all calls for service that request or require in-person contact by first responders, personal protective equipment has been distributed to public safety personnel, and modifications to fire and police response operations are being made.
The City’s public health efforts will continue to focus on containing the spread and mitigating the impact of COVID-19 in the community. For the latest information on COVID-19, with details on all that the City of Long Beach is doing to keep our residents safe, visit www.longbeach.gov/COVID19 and follow @LongBeachCity on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
Video of announcement
The article above was released by the Long Beach Police Department.