PEKIN — In an effort to protect detainees, staff and the general public from the current COVID-19 pandemic, the Tazewell County Justice Center will be closed until further notice.

The closure started at 6 p.m., said Tazewell County Sheriff Jeff Lower. The public areas of the justice center, he said, will be closed until further notice, only persons with specific business with the jail, patrol or administration will be allowed into the building.

There will be no in-house visitations with detainees, he said. Jail staff is currently working on an alternative off-site visiting method. They will update as the situation changes related to visitation, the sheriff said.

Detainees being brought to the Tazewell County Justice Center will also be subject to more intense medical screening questions before entry and all in-house programs that are conducted by outside volunteers have been suspended.

There are no known cases of COVID-19 in Tazewell County or the Tazewell County Jail. Lower said the changes were out of an "abundance of caution" during this pandemic.

These changes will be in place until further notice. Please check back on our social media and mobile app site for updates.