MIAMI (CBS4) – Two people confined to wheelchairs say they feel like prisoners in their own homes after the elevator in their North Miami apartment broke.

Mark Merriman has been in a wheelchair for 21 years. He was an innocent bystander in a shooting which left paralyzed on his left side. Merriman, who has worked as a ticket taker at the AmericanAirlines Arena said because the elevator isn’t working he’s been forced to miss work – including last night’s game between the Heat and the Pacers.

“I’m already confined to a wheelchair anything more just isn’t fair,” said Merriman.

Merriman is stuck on the second floor while Leo Allen, who’s in a wheelchair due to his diabetes, is stuck on the third floor

“It’s terrible,” said Allen.

Residents of the apartment building said the elevator has not worked for about three weeks and the only way to get to their apartments is to use the stairs. Not an option for Merriman or Allen.

“I’m in a wheel chair but I’m independent,” said Merriman.

The city of North Miami told CBS4 that the Building and Zoning Department opened a notice of violation for the apartment building at 360 N. East 1 25th St. and a building permit is opened with the county’s division of elevator safety.

The Royal property management company said they are in the process of trying to get this fixed, but could not provide any definite date on when that would happen

“I just really want this elevator fixed, express,” said Merriman.

Merriman and Allen said they’ve missed several doctors appointments because of the broken elevator. As far as Merriman’s job at the arena, they say they are holding his job for him and hope he’s back sooner than later.


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