As an NYU student recuperates from serious injuries from getting trapped in a gap outside his Lafayette Street dorm, his classmates and officials are trying to piece together how he got into the space to begin with.
Asher Vongtau, 19, remained in serious condition at Bellevue Hospital Center Monday with a fractured skull, pelvis and other injuries, according to the FDNY. Firefighters rescued VontagueSunday from a confined space at 80 Lafayette Street, an NYU dorm, where he was believed to be trapped for 36 hours.
School officials said they still don't know how Vongtau, who was reported missing by his friends Saturday morning, wound up in the gap. Students who live in the 18-floor dorm said they fwant answers.
"We all don't know the exact details, and there are a lot more questions," said senior Ben Ivan, 21, who lives on the 14th floor.
Vongtau, who is from Pennsylvania, was not seen after Friday night and his friends sought to file a missing person's report but the university said it filed one Sunday morning. NYU's public safety officers searched the sophomore's room, his classrooms and emergency rooms and talked to his friends, according to John Beckman, the school's spokesman.
They discovered Vongtau's items scattered throughout the building including his cellphone, according to the university who refused to give more details about that part of the search.
Several students heard that the phone was on the roof and some other dorm residents, like Morgan Bennyworth, 20, found shoes on the seventh floor Saturday.
"There were these high-top sport sneakers lying on the ground," she said. "They weren't there in the morning."
Eventually the security officers checked the gap between the buildings and found the missing student stuck on the ground floor in a space between the dorm and a parking garage and he was conscious. It took firefighters 90 minutes to excavate him out and get him to the hospital.
Cops, fire officials and the university said they will continue to investigate the incident.
Students said they were confused as to how anyone could get into that spot since the windows don't open the whole way and they are prohibited from entering the building's roof or balconies.
"They're really strict about it. They say, 'You will be kicked out if you get on a balcony,'" Bennyworth said.
The dorm residents said the fire alarm went off Saturday morning without warning and no one knew who triggered it.
"It wasn't a drill and woke all of us up at 7 in the morning," said Fabian Luna, 19 a sophomore who lives on the 14th floor.