Brazoria, Montgomery, Galveston County COVID-19 cases tied to same rodeo cook-off tent

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Four people who have tested positive for COVID-19 visited the same tent at the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo Barbecue Cookoff last month, according to organizers.

Two cases from Brazoria County, one case of a Patton Village police officer in Montgomery County, and a case from Galveston County were people who visited the Latino Peace Officer's Association tent, known at the cook-off as the "LPOA Roadkill Cafe," according to LPOA spokesperson Roy Gaivey.

Gaivey said he sent a group text message to the 18-member group after learning that the Patton Village police officer had tested positive for the novel coronavirus.

"All our team members were instructed to contact the guests they invited and their sponsors to inform them about the Patton Village officer and let them know that he was the one found to be presumptive positive," Gaivey said. "We're hoping no one else gets it."

The Montgomery County first coronavirus case, who was identified only as a Patton Village police officer, has a link to a presumptive case reported Friday by Galveston County.

But, in the hours after the Galveston County case was announced, the Patton Village officer was listed in critical condition, according to health officials.

City of Houston and Harris County officials cited the Montgomery County case, who is a man in his 40s, as the primary reason that RodeoHouston closed for the remainder of its season.

Harris County officials learned he was at the rodeo cook-off on Friday, Feb. 28. It's not known if he was there in a working capacity.

Health officials also did not know if the patient became sick with the virus before, during or after the event.

According to officials, the Kickoff BBQ on Feb. 28 was attended by 73,433 people.

This is what we know so far on that patient:
  • Presumptive positive case. He is a resident of northwest Montgomery County.
  • The patient's results are still pending from the CDC.
  • County officials say he has no travel history outside the state of Texas.
  • The county also said it has reached out to the man's close contacts and those most at risk.

  • Rodeo officials sent ABC13 the following statement:
    "The Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo has and will continue to work with the Houston Health Department and other local officials. Local health officials are leading the investigations and inquiries regarding any patients that may have contracted COVID-19. For HIPAA reasons, the Health Department does not share personal patient information with the Rodeo. Additionally, the World's Championship Bar-B-Que Contest tents are private, and we do not have information regarding guests at each tent. We have no confirmation as to which tent(s) any potential patients attended as this is being handled by local health officials, however, we will provide local officials with any information as needed."

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