A foul smell from a six-story apartment building led to a gruesome discovery in the northwestern city of Kocaeli yesterday. Firefighters breaking into an elevator stuck between the fifth and sixth floor found the body of Mustafa Ahmet Tekdoğan, 61, the owner and sole resident of the building. Authorities said Tekdoğan was trapped in the malfunctioned elevator about 25 days ago.
Tekdoğan was suffering mental problems after he lost his entire family in a 1999 earthquake that killed tens of thousands of people in Kocaeli and nearby cities. The strong odor emitted from the building and staff at a grocery store on the first floor of the residential building not seeing Tekdoğan for days led to the discovery. The building's iron-wrought floor was locked and firefighters entered the building through a window. Neighbors said Tekdoğan did not have a cellphone and he was unable to make his voice heard when the elevator got stuck. Police launched an investigation into the incident.