Texas Department of Criminal Justice employee dies, possibly due to COVID-19

The Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) has announced the death of an employee that may be related to the coronavirus COVID-19.

Kelvin Wilcher, 49, was a Correctional Officer last worked at the Estelle Unit in Huntsville on March 31.


The next day, April 1, he went to a Houston hospital, where he suffered a cardiac event.

Wilcher was in intensive care where he was tested for COVID-19. On April 4, that test returned positive. Wilcher died on Monday, April 6.

Officials are investigating whether the virus contributed to his death.

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“The thoughts and prayers of the entire Texas Department of Criminal Justice are with the Wilcher family,” Said TDCJ Executive Director Bryan Collier. “To lose a loved one unexpectedly is a tragic experience for anyone and the TDCJ family extends its sympathy and sends strength to get through this difficult time.”

There are no other positive cases associated with the Estelle Unit at this time. There are 358 offenders currently on medical restriction at that facility.

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