Texas Losing Officers to Virus
The Texas Department of Criminal Justice announced yet another loss of a corrections officer to the coronavirus health threat. Corrections Officer V Jonathon Keith Goodman, age 52, lost his battle with the disease on April 21, 2020. Goodman died due to complications fighting off the COVID19 virus, which is continuing to threaten Texas prisons.
Officer Goodman had served his community in law enforcement by providing security as a corrections officer with the Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ). He had recently been assigned to the William P. Clements Unit located in Amarillo, Texas. He had served the TDCJ for fourteen years.
Texas Prisons and COVID19
COVID19 has ravaged America's prison systems, and Texas prisons are no exception. With Texas having more prisons and inmates than any other state in the nation, dealing with this health crisis's outcome has not been easy.
The Texas Department of Criminal Justice is currently undergoing an attempt to bring this health threat under control within its correctional facilities. The TDCJ will give out test kits, allowing prison inmates to self-test, through newly available kits. At this time, less than 2% of the total Texas prison population has been tested for the virus. As of numbers released on May 12, more than 1700 inmates have been infected with the virus, and 30 of these cases have resulted in death.
The TDCJ has also lost several corrections officers and other prison system employees, like Officer Goodman. Bryan Collier, the TDCJ Executive Director, made several brief statements regarding the testing being done. The results gathered from the more considerable testing will, "Increase the information available to our medical professionals will help us to further enhance the agency's ability to stop the spread of COVID-19."
The most recent assignment for Officer Goodman was at the Clements Unit. This facility, also known as the William P. Clements Unit, was built in Amarillo, Texas, in 1990. This facility holds prisoners of all levels from minimum to maximum security. It has the capacity to hold 3,798 inmates.
The prison offers treatment programs as well as a variety of occupational programs. Inmates can participate in programs that include diesel mechanics and automotive brake systems. They can also choose to work in the cattle industry, landscaping/gardening, or an onsite shoe factory. The goal is to return inmates to society with the necessary skills to gain employment, housing, and a future.
A Loving Family Mourns Loss
Officer Goodman is survived by his wife, four sons and two daughters. Officer Goodman married his wife, Kimberly Pride, in 2015. He also will be remembered by his large, close, and extended family, including his mother, brother, and five sisters. He also had many friends and co-workers who will miss his smile and friendship. The TDCJ also employs officer Goodman's wife.
TDCJ Executive Director Brian Collier gave a brief statement regarding the loss of Officer Goodman. "All of the thoughts and prayers of the entire Texas Department of Criminal Justice go out to the Goodman family. The unexpected loss of one who is loved so deeply is a tragic time, and the TDCJ family sends its strength and extends its profound sympathy to the Goodman family to get through this difficult time."