By Dave Carlin

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Police are still investigating the mysterious death of a woman on Staten Island who was found stuck in a garbage chute.

Outside, police officers guard the parking lot and the entrances to the apartment building, and inside, detectives spent Saturday looking for clues.

Neighbors were stunned to learn 34-year-old Lisa Maria Hernandez was pronounced dead at a hospital Friday afternoon.

MORE: Woman Dies After Getting Stuck In Garbage Chute On Staten Island

Donna Vroom also lives in the seven-story building on Victory Boulevard in the Silver Lake section.

“I hope it gets solved real soon because I’m a little worried,” Vroom told CBS2’s Dave Carlin.

A tenant found Hernandez unconscious, lodged feet first, partway in the third-floor garbage chute.

“I don’t know how anybody could possibly fit there,” Vroom said. “When I take mom’s garbage out, you got to push it and take all the air out of the bags and everything.”

“We had specialized equipment on the floor below starting to open up the shaft, but units were able to get her out of the the opening when she was stuck in,” FDNY Deputy Chief Mark Egan said. “The opening on the third floor, they were able to pull her out.”

If investigators recovered anything definitive from security cameras or from witness statements, they are not saying.

Until the medical examiner determines cause of death, they will not even classify this case as a crime.

Some neighbors heard a loud argument in the building earlier in the day.

“Apparently somebody was knocking on doors asking for help,” Vroom said.

Police say they have notified Hernandez’s family.


Dave Carlin