In her seven years as Dallas police officer, Allison Brockford has worked in patrol, in youth outreach and now works for the neighborhood policing program.
Like most other first responders, Brockford comes in contact with a lot of people.
The police officer is stationed at northeast patrol and started experiencing symptoms of the coronavirus in mid-March — around the same time county and city officials called for the closures of restaurants, bars and theaters.
She tested positive for COVID-19 and is one of 11 Dallas police officers who have gotten the disease. Two civilian employees of the Dallas Police Department have also tested positive for the novel coronavirus.
“For me, it started with a cough, didn’t seem that abnormal,” Brockford said. “Some itchy eyes, pain in my eyes and then a real bad headache. I had a very mild fever, it never broke 100, it felt like it did. And real, just terrible, body aches.”
Brockford is not sure how she was exposed to the virus.
“There’s really no way of telling. I come into a lot of contact with people through my work and we weren’t really doing a lot in my personal life,” she said. “So I would assume probably through work but again between the incubation period and so many people not showing symptoms I think it’s really hard to know.”
Brockford is the only police officer who is known to have the virus at the northeast patrol station.
After nearly a month away, Brockford returned to work this week.
“It did feel good to get back in the car, to be riding around with my partner, to see my other teammates here,” Brockford said.
Various community organizations have donated personal protective equipment to the Dallas Police Department, including a donation of 2,000 masks on Tuesday.
“Our guys are on the front lines and still taking a risk every day," said Sgt. George Aranda, president of the local chapter of the National Latino Law Enforcement Organization.
"You know, we’re human, we have wives, families, husbands, kids, so we have to protect ourselves," Aranda said.
Brockford says she is fortunate she didn't have to go to the hospital and is otherwise healthy. She's thankful to be back at work.
“I’m super grateful, it could have been a lot worse for me,” she said. “I was not alone. I felt very much supported and loved.”
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