March 24 (UPI) -- Six inmates were loose Tuesday after 14 inmates escaped a county jail in Washington state overnight.
The inmates had used a table inside the annex to break open an exterior fire door, Yakima County Sheriff's Office said in a Facebook post. Eight of them were captured and are back in jail while six remain at large.
The six escapees have been identified as Tyrone Mulvaney, 34, Andrew Wolfey, 26, Neftali Serrano, 27, Fernando Castaneda-Sandoval, 31, Hugo Amezcua-Hernandez, 28, and Miguel Chavez-Amezcua, 27.
Yakima County Sheriff Robert Udell told NBC affiliate KNDU the men escaped out of fear about a state order Gov. Jay Inslee issued Monday to "Stay Home, Stay Healthy" because of the coronavirus pandemic.
The Yakima Health District has reported as of last night's update that 41 people in the county are confirmed or presumed to the have the coronavirus.
Yakima County Department of Corrections Director Ed Campbell told NBC News the jail, which has about 800 inmates, is strictly following Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and state health protocols.
Campbell added that four inmates were tested and no inmate or staff has tested positive for the virus.
"We are continuing to monitor all in-custody inmates and if any show any signs would quarantine them in a negative air-flow unit and have them tested," Campbell said.
Police said the inmates were likely wearing green shirts, imprinted with YCDOC and dark sweatpants.
The escapees' charges include theft, assault, resisting arrest, possession of a firearm and drug offenses.
The Washington State Patrol and U.S. Marshals Service have been assisting in the search effort.