Tuesday, January 31, 2023 | Back issues
Courthouse News Service Courthouse News Service

Breast-Mangling Escalator Ride at a Casino

COLUMBUS, Ohio (CN) - A woman who needed the jaws of life to free her from a gruesome encounter with a casino escalator claims in court that the injury caused one of her breasts to explode and mangled the other.

Taking aim at Schindler Elevator Company in her July 1 lawsuit, Gloria Hector says the company failed to maintain its escalator at the Scioto Downs Racino, making it impossible for anyone to stop it in an emergency.

The ordeal began on Aug. 27, 2011, when Hector's tied shoelace allegedly became caught in the escalator while she was leaving the casino.

Hector "frantically tried to pull her foot free," the complaint says, when the escalator jerked sending Hector face-forward as the escalator continued its descent.

Horrified witnesses looking on had no way to stop the escalator, Hector says, noting that "the emergency stop switch located at the escalator was taped over."

Once Hector reached the bottom, the face plate caught hold of her "shirt, then breasts," the complaint says.

It continued to move, pulling her breasts deeper and deeper into the comb plate and assembly of the escalator mechanism," the complaint continues. "Plaintiff thought that she was dying.

Hector says her blood had pooled all around the bottom of the escalator before Scioto Downs personnel managed to turn off the escalator from a remote location.

An emergency medical team arrived at the same time.

Though they cut off Hector's shirt and bra, they needed "other crews with the jaws of life to remove the metal plates and allow them to extricate [Hector's] breasts from the machinery," according to the complaint.

After the initial treatment, according to the complaint, "one breast suddenly exploded with pus and blood."

Hector says the incident took both her nipples, and her breasts are disfigured with scars.

"If breast surgeries are performed, they will markedly decrease the size and shape of the breasts but will be unable to naturally recreate the appearance of her nipples or normal structures," the complaint says.

In addition to continuing breast and chest pain, Hector says she chipped a tooth and suffered a black eye.

Seeking damages for breach of contract, negligence and other claims, Hector is represented by AmySue Taylor of Powell, Ohio.

Hector filed the suit Friday in Franklin County Court, having voluntarily dismissed a first attempt at the same suit last year.

Read the Top 8

Sign up for the Top 8, a roundup of the day's top stories delivered directly to your inbox Monday through Friday.