Local/State

Inspector who killed self after Philadelphia collapse left videos

Friday, June 14, 2013

The Philadelphia building inspector who killed himself one week after a collapse that left six people dead left two video recordings before taking his life, the mayor's office told Action News.

In those videos, Ronald Wagenhoffer said, "It wasn't my fault," the mayor's office said.

The videos were made in his pickup truck before he shot and killed himself Wednesday night, according to the mayor's office.

Wagenhoffer was the inspector who approved the start of demolition at 22nd and Market Streets. The building collapse at that site last week killed 6 and left 13 injured.

The spokesman for Mayor Michael Nutter, Mark McDonald, says Wagenhoffer couldn't sleep in the days after the tragedy, and said in his message he wished he could have done more in the period before the accident.

The mayor's office called the veteran inspector a committed, hardworking person.

The mayor himself defended Wagenhoffer Thursday during a trip to Chicago.

"This is a guy who's a 16-year veteran employee who cared passionately about his work," said Nutter. "He was the inspector on the site, doing his job."

Wagenhoffer was discovered dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the chest in his truck in a wooded area near his Roxborough home.

The 16-year veteran of the Department of Licenses and Inspections worked his way up the city ranks.

The city said he opted not to take any extra time off following the collapse. It is offering counseling to all city employees following his suicide.

The city says it doesn't routinely release or comment on this type of personal and sensitive information. However, it says it did in this case after seeing erroneous reports.

Hearings before a special City Council committee formed in reaction to the collapse begin Wednesday.

(Copyright ©2014 WPVI-TV/DT. All Rights Reserved.)

Get more Local/State »


Tags:
center city, philadelphia, collapse, local/state
blog comments powered by Disqus
Advertisement