Up until now, there had not been any COVID-19 related deaths in the Idaho prison system. That all changed this week when a prisoner died of the virus on Wednesday. Frank Dawson Conover would have turned 66 years old on Thursday. Sadly, he did not live to see his next birthday.
Instead, Conover, who was housed at the Idaho State Correctional Facility, spent his last hours at a Boise hospital. He was taken to the hospital for underlying health conditions. When there, he was tested for COVID-19 as per hospital protocol. Conover tested positive. While the authorities have not confirmed if his death was caused or even related to COVID-19, he did test positive.
Conover had been convicted of drug possession and drug trafficking. Due to Idaho’s strict drug laws, he was serving two consecutive sentences. One was set to run out in 2022. The other was not over until 2032. Reports show that Conover was eligible for parole in 2022.
So far, the Idaho prison system has tested more than 2,000 inmates that came back positive. 60 of these people were symptomatic of the virus. More than 200 others who tested positive did not show any symptoms. 121 more are pending. The scary thing is that there are more than 500 inmates who tested positive but were already released. There is no idea if these people are being tracked or not.
This is the first death of any inmate in the Idaho penal system. According to the prison’s spokesperson, Jeff Ray, they do not know of any others who have died from COVID-19. There is a fear that many inmates are at great risk of contracting the disease due to the conditions at the jails.
If your loved one is in prison and you fear they may become sick, call our office and talk to us right away.