A 38-year-old woman may have spent days trapped inside a clothing donation bin in Paterson before she was rescued by firefighters on Monday, authorities said.
“We don’t know factually when she went (into the bin) but she said she was there since Friday,” Police Director Jerry Speziale said Tuesday morning.
The woman told police she was reaching inside the bin behind an apartment building on Broadway when someone pushed her from behind.
But firefighters doubted her story, saying they’ve rescued her from the bin at least twice before, according to the police director.
“It’s possible she climbed inside. Why she would have done so, we don’t know,” Speziale said.
Once a person is inside the bin, it’s “nearly impossible to get out” due to the configuration of the sliding door on the box, Speziale said.
A person passing the donation box about 11:30 a.m. on Monday heard the woman crying for help from inside and called 911, Speziale said.
When firefighters found her, the woman complained of “feeling cold and numbness in her legs,” Speziale said.
“She was suffering from being in the inclement weather, from being in the cold,” he said.
The woman was taken to St. Joseph’s Regional Medical Center where she was examined for frostbite, warmed up and then released, police said.
Anthony G. Attrino may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @TonyAttrino. Find NJ.com on Facebook.
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