LOS ANGELES (AP) — A toddler’s finger has been severed by a Los Angeles courthouse escalator.

City fire spokesman Brian Humphrey says the 17-month-old boy was riding down the Van Nuys courthouse escalator on Tuesday when his left index finger was amputated in the comb-and-groove of the foot tread near the first-floor bottom of the escalator.

Firefighters took apart the mechanical steps and found the finger about 90 minutes later.

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Comments (24)
  1. Eric says:

    Seems to me the parents were not watching the child. He should have been standing, holding his parents hand, not have his hands on the escalator floor/step.

    1. lala63 says:

      EXACTLY! I remember when I was a kid how my parents would watch AND TEACH me about the dangers of certain things (ie: elculators, elevators, hinges in doors, etc…) Most of these people (and I am SURE the “parents” who had any business at the Van Nuys Courthouse were NOT doing any teaching or explaining, or anything that would amount to enlightening their kid of the dangers out in the world. Maybe someone else in the “village” was supposed to be doing that? YEs, granted … the things I say there are an assuption – though one I would bet a million dollars upon!!!

  2. momo says:

    This is the parents’ fault. The other day, I was driving and this kid ran in front on my car. I was able to stop, and I yelled at the parents for being stupid and irresponsible. They were like about half a block away from the child.

  3. c-man says:

    Once again, a parent not watching their child properly. There are certain times when a child needs to be minded extremely close. Being on an escalator is one of those times. No doubt the parents will sue and once again, I am sure the City of Los Angeles will make an out of court settlement for hundreds of thousands of dollars when this most definetley could have been prevented had the parents been more mindful.

  4. Bob Patrick says:

    Blame the parents and the one and a half year old kid for what happened is just down right stopped. This was a accident in a public place. This should have never happened in the first place. Poor maintenance is no excuse for blaming the parents. what if it was your toe that got chopped off on the escalator? Put blame where blame belongs.

    1. sdfahlj says:

      Bob, this is the parent’s faul, dont compare an adult’s toes to a 1.5yo’s finger, being that small, it can get stuck anywhere. Now, as for the parent, i have 3 kids myself, yes, they like to stick their finger in places, but its up to the parent to protect them, no way in hell are my 1.5 or 3yo sitting down/running/or playing anywhere near the escalator. They’re either being hold down the escalator or i’m holding their hand when they’re standing on it.

  5. Al says:

    Give me a break! Hispanic parents love their kids as much as any others. This could have happened to any family.
    However, I do agree regarding the lawsuit part. They should take responsibility for their lack of supervision.

    1. Patrick A Carrajat says:

      The escalator code requires that there be no more than 5/16″ clearance between the moving steps and the combfingers. This is most likely a case of the comb fingers beings et to high or the step coming in too low. I have been in the escalator field for 48 years, this is not the parents fault.

  6. Andie says:

    use the elevator next time! or use a kid lease, or hold your child….. but then again why is a 17 mo old in court anyways??? i wonder if it was a hispanic family??

    1. Amanda says:

      Andie YOUR A RACIST stupid comment, it was probably you!!!

    2. http://catholic-bulletin.blogspot.com/ says:


      Stay on the topic and don’t add irrelevant comments that may hurt other people. One might say your mother or parents are not watching while your commenting. Endless scenario.

  7. Andie says:

    i never said they didnt love their kids…. no common sense to bring children to court!! also when shopping the let their kids run loose and they crash into people and act like nothing happened!! thats what i’m sick of!!

    1. Efrain says:

      I’m sick of white meth trailer trailer also with their white dirty parents smoking cigarettes around everyone with no consideration.

    2. Amanda says:

      BE sick of yourself!!!!

  8. roy rogers says:

    No matter what race the child comes from, once again it is child neglect. poor parenting. A 17 month child does not know the difference between dog poop and a snicker bar. This is why parents have to montior their childreb at all times. But then again who is montioring them!
    And yes the City of L.A. will pay, though it is us the taxpayers who are really paying for the peoples stupidity, for years to come.

  9. FedUp says:

    This is sad. its the parents fault and no one else’s. There shouldnt be any type of lawsuit because it wouldnt have happend if the PARENTS were watching this kid. I live in south LA and many many many times down my block do i see all these lilttle black kids running around the streets with NO supervision at all. These kids look as young as 3 or 4 just in the middle of the street with no parents around. once in a while you hear moma yelling but no sight of the parents. Shame on all these BAD parents.

  10. talega says:

    When I was a kid, we ran around unsupervised. Somehow we knew better than to stick our fingers near moving objects. But, until then, we were told over and over what dangers lurked so that we could learn how to protect ourselves. With no parenting taking place anymore, kids aren’t getting survival instructions.

  11. Leo says:

    Let’s just say this…because of the age of the child, the parent should have carried the child or held his hand while on the escalator. There should have been no way for the child to reach down and touch the moving steps. And while it’s popular to always blame parents when things happen to kids, especially by people who do not have kids, in this case, it clearly is parent error.

  12. denise says:

    Black,white, purple or green..it doesn’t matter what race the child was; the PARENTS were not diligent in watching their child. End of story! And I’ve seen plenty of “little white kids” running in the street with no parents around supervising them, so let’s get off the race thing. I live across the street from a park and there are more “white kids” than any other. Skateboards rolling into the street, bikes darting between cars, balls rolling into the street and the kids chase after them with no regard for cars.

  13. Snerkles says:

    The parent should have been carrying the child. A 17-month old child does not have the balance, and attention span, to ride an escalator, standing.

  14. swhitS says:

    What the hell do parents teach their kids these days? What happened to holding your child in dangerous places? You do not let a 17 month old go down an escalator ever unless you want to make sure your kid is damaged or killed.

  15. me says:

    AHHHHHHH Parenting tough job lots of people have kids (TOOOOOOO MANY) at close ages, But not alot of people now how to PARENT them !!!!!!!

  16. Chris says:

    I dont like pickles on my cheeseburger!

  17. kirsten says:

    watch your children people hello get the message

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