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Bronx teen survives 5-story elevator plunge

March 30, 2012 1:16:03 PM PDT
A Bronx teenager is recovering after falling five stories in an elevator.

"I was just thinking, I could've lost my life," said Kenneth Lacen, elevator accident victim.

There's no doubt that 17-year-old Kenneth Lacen, had the scare of his life on Woodycrest Avenue in the Highbridge section of the Bronx Thursday night.

He says he got into the elevator on the fifth floor and then its door failed to close properly.

The next thing he knew, Kenneth was free-falling more than five flights.

"Yeah, crashed, like between the basement and the first floor," Lacen said.

Lacen injured his leg and his back and firefighters had to pry open the elevator to rescue him.

When they did, residents took pictures of exposed wiring.

The city's Department of Buildings is now telling Eyewitness News the official cause of the accident; two of the ropes that pull the elevator failed.

Residents in the building say it's the second time that it has happened.

"I'm just glad that he's alive, it could've been worse," said Tashone Glenn, the victim's godmother.

Glenn and others say they've complained, numerous times, about the many elevator problems.

The super didn't answer his door when Eyewitness News knocked.

"I've personally complained to the super, to the landlord. Nothing's been done," Glenn said.

This building did have three outstanding elevator violations before this accident even happened for things like worn out parts, and exposed wiring.

Now, the owner has two more violations, for failing to fix it.

The owner is listed as 949 Anderson Avenue LLC.

Efforts to reach them were unsuccessful.

The building's residents, especially elderly ones, who now have to cope with walking up and down the stairs.

Residents say they're scared and like Lacen wonder if it gets fixed whether or not it will be safe to ride again.

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