National News

Boston University lecturer killed in elevator accident at apartment building

Posted September 15, 2020 8:52 a.m. EDT
Updated September 16, 2020 7:20 a.m. EDT

— Boston police have identified the young woman killed in an elevator accident on Monday.

Carrie O'Connor, a Boston University lecturer in her 30s, was found on the first floor of her apartment building off Commonwealth Avenue in Allston. Another resident said she was warned about the elevator moments before the doors closed.

O'Connor had recently moved in.

"It was horrifying," said Leanne Scorzoni, another tenant. "I would never want to hear that ever. It wasn't a cry. I can't even describe what it was."

Scorzoni said another resident saw O'Connor moments before the accident.

"He was helping her with a box into the building," Scorzoni said. "And he was going up the stairs and he had told her, 'Hey, just be careful,' because you have to pull the door across and then step in and then press the button. However if you have something in there it can trigger a sensor. He believes that whatever she was trying to get in there hit the sensor and then it started moving."

Police said O'Connor was found in the elevator and died of traumatic asphyxia, which is a crushing injury.

"It's like a two-slide door system and unless that door is completely shut it does not move ever," Scorzoni said. "That was really scary thinking it could have been me, it could have been anyone."

The accident is under investigation.

The property manager said the elevator that was involved was inspected within the last year, and a spokesperson for the state agency in charge of those inspections said everything passed and met state regulations.

Eric Carmichael, another resident in the building, said his wife was home when it happened and ran to help.

Woman dies in elevator accident in Boston apartment building

"She didn't want to tell me the details because it was kind of gruesome," he said. "She heard a woman in distress and tried to help her out as a neighbor, but she couldn't really help out that lady."

Carmichael said he and his wife are now left stunned.

"[It's a] terrible old elevator that should have been probably kept up better ... led to the loss of a life," he said.

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