GASTON COUNTY, N.C. –  The number of inmates inside some North Carolina jails is dropping.

Many counties have taken measures to reduce their jail counts to avoid a potential outbreak in facilities.

In Gaston County, for example, the number of inmates is down from around 600 prior to COVID-19 to just over 350 today.

The sheriff says his facilities were over capacity prior to COVID-19 and social distancing was pretty much impossible.

He says judges, public defenders, the DA's office, and law enforcement worked together.

He says the departments worked to get pleas for people in order to end cases. He also says law enforcement issued some citations when public safety would allow.

Three staff members inside the Gaston County jail and zero inmates have tested positive for coronavirus.