8th Inmate at Terminal Island Dies of COVID-19

Rebekah Sager
May 28, 2020 - 6:25 am

Prison officials at the Federal Correctional Institution at Terminal Island in San Pedro, California report that the eighth inmate at the facility has died of COVID-19.

Adrian Solarzano, 54, had recovered from the virus on May 10, showing no symptoms. He initially diagnosed on April 16 and was placed in isolation, according to the Federal Bureau of Prisons.

On May 15, he was admitted to the hospital complaining of chest pains and anxiety. He was tested for coronavirus twice and both times Solarzano tested negative. 

Prison officials say over 70% of the inmate population has tested positive for the virus. 

Solarzano died on May 24. 

According to the Los Angeles County Public Health Department, 1,023 men have died from the virus in the low-security prison, and 13 staff members and 723 inmates have reportedly tested positive.

The American Civil Liberties Union filed a class-action lawsuit on May 16 on behalf of the prisoners at Terminal -- claiming overcrowding is a danger during the pandemic, as prisoners are unable to maintain social distancing for their health and safety. 

Congresswoman Nanette Diaz Barragán, who represents California’s 44th District toured the facility and compared it to conditions at the U.S.-Mexico border.

“While I was there, I would hear the inmates screaming that were in isolation units,” Barragán said according to KTLA. “‘Saying ‘turn on the air, get us some air, help me, I need to make a call.’”