A 75-year-old inmate is the first COVID-19 fatality at State Correctional Institution Mercer.

Officials from the state Department of Corrections said the inmate died at the Findley Township prison. He was serving a 25-to-50-year sentence for involuntary deviate sexual intercourse. He had been an inmate at SCI Mercer since Aug. 30, 2016.

Department of Corrections officials said Pennsylvania is one of only six states where the prison COVID-19 death rate is lower than the state's overall virus death rate.

“We continue our battle against this dangerous invisible enemy,” Corrections Secretary John Wetzel said. “With fall upon us, we are experiencing a resurgence. That is why it is vital to continue our aggressive mitigation efforts. We cannot let our guard down.”


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