Staten Island, NY — Police say a New York woman suffocated inside a clothing drop box after she climbed inside to steal donated clothing.
Yesterday around noon, 51-year-old Melissa Mazzeo climbed into the large metal box located on the side of Victory Superette and Bagels. When she tried to get out, karma paid a visit and the box’s door swung down on her neck.
A witness heard Mazzeo’s screams and ran inside the bagel shop for help. When one of the shop’s employees went out to assist, he found poor Mazzeo unresponsive with her head and hands sticking outside the box.
“Two hands and a head, that’s it, just out the door,” the man said. “Not a sight to see.”
Mazzeo must have really been wedged in there because she stayed that way for a few hours. Neither police or rescue workers were able to free her until someone came and removed the lock.
A spokesperson for the New York Police Department said Mazzeo has a history of stealing clothing from the donation boxes and often had a shopping cart and a hook she used to remove the donated clothes. She also had a court appearance in May regarding her arrested for attempted petit larceny and criminal possession of stolen property.
Her neighbors say she was a troubled woman who often argued with other people on her block. They described her as eccentric, and say she would often dig through trash and leave items she’d scavenged on her lawn.Tags: Crime, donation box, Melissa Mazzeo, New York, Theft