Luzerne County Prison Still Down To One Elevator Following Deadly Fall
WILKES-BARRE — An attorney with Kline and Spector, as well as engineers and others, met with Luzerne County Prison administrators for an inspection Wednesday morning. It comes about six months after two men died in the jail.
Authorities say inmate Timothy Gilliam got into a fight with Corrections Officer Kristopher Moules in July when Gilliam fell into the prison’s fifth-floor elevator. It gave way at its base, and he pulled Moules with him. Both fell nearly 60 feet.
“This is a catastrophic incident,” said Luzerne County Manager David Pedri.
He added that in the six months since the tragedy, the jail has had only one working elevator. The other had to be preserved so experts could collect potential evidence.
“We were hoping to move forward with repairs as soon as possible, but we’ve been put on notice of potential lawsuits,” he said.
The county is making sure everyone involved in the incident is allowed to inspect the elevator. Some of those include the Moules estate and Gilliam’s mother Kia Bradford
“This would be in all likelihood, a product liability case,” suspects Jonathan Comitz, an attorney in Wilkes-Barre. He is not involved with the jail inspections, but he says experts may be looking for a defect in the elevator.
“Whether it was a defect as a result of an inspection, a defect that developed over time. If these were older elevators, to see if anything was loose, broken, to see if something should have been prepared and wasn’t,” he said.
Luzerne County officials do not know when they will be able to make repairs to the elevator.