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story.lead_photo.caption FILE - In this June 14, 2018 file photo, Arkansas Department of Correction Director Wendy Kelley testifies before legislators at the state Capitol in Little Rock, Ark. ( The Associated Press )

Arkansas Department of Corrections Secretary Wendy Kelley will retire from her role overseeing Arkansas' prisons and community corrections agencies at the end of July, a spokeswoman confirmed Monday.

Kelley, who has been in charge of state prisons since 2015, will leave amid the global coronavirus pandemic that has infected more than 2,000 state prisoners, killing 13.

Kelley was tapped by Asa Hutchinson to serve as his corrections secretary in 2019, after Arkansas' prison, parole and probation agencies were merged into a single cabinet department.

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