West Virginia governor trapped in malfunctioning elevator

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CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — A malfunction caused West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice to become trapped in the elevator at the governor's residence Thursday, his office said.

The Republican governor was stuck for about 30 minutes after the malfunction as mansion staff, state police and other state government personnel worked to open the elevator, Justice's office said in a news release.

A crowbar and other tools were used to pry open the elevator doors, the statement said.

“I appreciate those who helped out this afternoon and the expressions of concern I’ve received,” Justice said.

In a separate incident recently, First lady Cathy Justice also was trapped briefly in the elevator.

“I’m just fine, thankfully, and so is Cathy after having a similar problem a few weeks ago," the governor said. "I’ve asked maintenance and safety personnel to thoroughly inspect the elevator to determine how to prevent this from happening again, and to conduct a full review of the safety and soundness of the entire structure.”