Lara Prychenko, 48, was found dead on Tuesday afternoon in a trash compactor at a 29-story condominium tower in Manhattan, according to the NYPD. Her death is a mystery, and the story quickly gained attention because Anthony Weiner and Huma Abedin owned an apartment there. Although the NYPD confirmed to Heavy that her name was Lara Prychenko, other sources including the Daily Mail have named her as Lara Prychodko. Here’s what we know so far about what happened.
1. The NYPD Confirmed with Heavy That Her Name Was Lara Prychenko, But Other Sources Have Reported Her Name as Lara Prychodko
A building employee found Lara Prychenko inside a trash compactor early on Tuesday night, ABC News reported. She was later identified by police as a resident of the Zeckendorf Towers. She was found unconscious and unresponsive, according to police, and pronounced dead at the scene. The building is at 1 Irving Place near Union Square.
Her identity is where things get a little confusing. The Daily Mail is reporting her name as Lara Prychodko and is providing detailed information about her background. When Heavy reached out to the Office of the Deputy Commissioner, Public Information for the NYPD, they responded: “Pursuant to the investigation the deceased has been identified as: Deceased: Prychenko, Lara 48-year-old female.”
It’s unclear why there is confusion about her name. The Daily Mail also spoke to the NYPD and is reporting that Prychodko had been living in the building for six months and was in the process of divorcing her husband, David Christopher Schlachet. They had one son and were married in 2003. Prychodko worked for WebMD Health. Heavy cannot confirm that Prychodko was the woman who passed away, since the NYPD released a different name to Heavy.
Residents only found out something was wrong when they received a strange email from building management telling them not to use the trash chute, CBS New York reported.
Nicki Leitner told CBS New York: ““It’s scary. In fact, when I texted my boyfriend about this he told me to get out of the building cause he was worried, as was I. But it was so hush-hush.”
2. She Was Seen on Surveillance Video Entering the Trash Compactor Room Alone & Appeared Drunk
Prychenko was seen on surveillance video entering the building’s trash compactor room alone, CBS New York reported. The surveillance video has not been released, but it showed her walking down the hallway like nothing was wrong, New York Daily News reported. The New York Post reported that Prychodko was last seen on surveillance footage on Tuesday at 4:20 p.m. walking and stumbling in waht appeared to be a stupor on the 27th floor.
3. Prychenko Fell Down the Chute from Either the 27th Floor or the 10th Floor
A co-worker of the employee who found Prychenko told New York Daily News that she had fallen down the chute and “slid down like garbage.” The employee said that she fell all the way from the 27th floor. The building is 29 stories tall. However, The Daily Mail reported that she fell down the chute from the 10th floor, but The New York Post also reported that she fell from the 27th floor. Her purse was founded by the building’s elevator.
4. Police Said They Don’t Know if Her Death Was an Accident, But Said They’re Not Looking for Suspects
Police said they were trying to determine if Prychenko’s death was intentional or accidental, ABC 7 reported. However, they said they are not looking for suspects. A spokesman for the NYPD told Daily Mail that her cause of death isn’t yet known and will be announced by the medical examiner. A maintenance said that her body appeared crushed from multiple angles, The New York Post reported.
The building’s doorman told New York Daily News that she was a happy and pleasant person. “She went up to her apartment and then she jumped into the chute,” was the doorman’s guess about what happened.
Prychenko’s body was found Tuesday around 4:55 p.m., officials said.
5. Anthony Weiner & Huma Abedin Owned an Apartment There That They Listed for Rent in 2017
The story quickly gained national attention when people connected the building to Anthony Weiner and Huma Abedin. Weiner and Abedin have owned an apartment in the building for 16 years, Daily Mail reported. It was listed for rent for $11,900 a month on May 19, 2017, the day that Weiner pleaded guilty to sexting and he and Abedin filed for divorce. This listing was taken down a few days later, and it wasn’t clear if it was taken off the market or if a renter was found.
Zeckendorf is a luxury condo complex at Irving Place and E. 15th St. Studio apartments rent for about $3,000 a month, and the cheapest studio for sale is priced at about $995,000, ABC 11 reported. A two-bedroom, two-bath can cost about $3.25 million. This is a developing story.