Two Injured in Elevator Mishaps at Criminal Justice Center

The building was evacuated this morning.


The scene outside the Criminal Justice Center this morning. Photo | Jared Brey

A middle-aged woman was sent to the hospital after an elevator she was riding at the Juanita Kidd Stout Center for Criminal Justice fell on Thursday morning, Sheriff Jewell Williams said.

The building was evacuated after the elevator fell.

The woman appeared to be OK, but was sent to the hospital as a precaution, Williams said.

Williams didn’t know the name or age of the woman who went to the hospital, nor did he know what floor it fell from.

Judge Patrick Dugan was in Room 1006 when he said he heard a loud booming sound. The building was evacuated shortly after.

Williams said the Sheriff’s Dept. will send out a press release when it learns more details.

According to reports, a second person was injured in a separate elevator incident at the building, a Sheriff’s office employee, 50, who is in critical condition. The elevators are reportedly used by court employees and not the public.

On Thursday afternoon, Mayor Jim Kenney’s office released a statement saying that the cause of the elevator crash is under investigation, and that the Department of Licenses and Inspections had inspected the building’s elevators in June.

A juror who was at the building at the time tweeted their account:

It appears that this might not be an unusual occurrence in the building.

The full statement from the mayor’s office is below.

Thursday morning, an elevator containing one passenger went through the ceiling of the elevator shaft at the Criminal Justice Center (CJC) building penthouse. The cause is currently undergoing state investigation. When the elevator went through the ceiling, debris fell down onto another elevator below, which also contained one passenger. This second elevator sustained little damage. The Philadelphia Fire Department responded to rescue, treat, and transport the elevators’ two occupants.

Because the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry oversees elevator safety and is responsible for elevator inspections throughout the state, questions regarding inspection history should be referred to them. City records show that all elevators were inspected by the state on June 14, 2016, and passed inspection. The remaining six elevators have been cleared again today by state inspectors. The City’s Department of Licenses and Inspections (L&I) will require that the damage to the elevator shaft ceiling be repaired and that the elevator be recertified by the state before that bank of elevators can be reopened.

This is a developing story.