Report: Man found dead, decomposing in elevator had hit emergency button twice

Isaak Komisarchik (Denver Police)

DENVER (CBS/AP) — An elderly Colorado man found dead in a parking garage elevator had pushed the emergency button twice but got no response, police said.

The decomposing body of 82-year-old Isaak Komisarchik was found last week after multiple residents of a Denver apartment complex reported a terrible stench. Elevator repair workers found the body.

An investigation into the death by the Denver Police Department revealed that Komisarchik pushed the emergency button twice during an 8-minute span on July 6 but got no response, The Denver Post reported Thursday.

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The calls went to MEI Total Elevator Solutions, which reported them to the apartment complex, Woodstream Village. Apartment complex staffers checked two elevators, but not the one containing Komisarchik.

Komisarchik, who suffered from dementia, was inside an elevator in a parking garage that had been closed for renovation, and the elevator was not operable.

“How he got in there and when he got in there is obviously what we’re trying to figure out,” said John White, spokesman for Denver police.

Woodstream Village resident Moe Ashor told CBS Denver, “This specific issue, with this specific scent, coming from this specific stairwell and elevator area has been mentioned on several occasions.”

“It was just a distinct smell, people know it right away,” fellow resident Jacob Ramirez told the station.

“Oh my God, now that we know what it was, it does smell like what it was,” Ashor said. “(It smelled) like a carcass decomposing.”

Several residents told CBS Denver the elevator Komisarchik was located in was part of a structure that connects the complex’s parking garage with the units.

“It’s a very small, weird elevator, that is always making a weird buzzing sound,” Ashor said.

Komisarchik was last seen wearing pajamas at on July 5 at a nearby nursing facility.

Komisarchik’s disappearance sparked a large dragnet in which missing persons posters were distributed and Denver firefighters searched five ponds near the apartment complex in an attempt to find him.

The emergency notification system apparently did not specify the exact elevator making the emergency call, but an investigation continues, said Denver Police spokesman Doug Schepman.

The cause of death has not yet been determined. Foul play is not suspected, Schepman said.

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