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Woman dies after falling into a disused garage in Rome

A 37-year-old woman has died after falling eight metres into an underground garage in Rome, local media reported on Wednesday.

Woman dies after falling into a disused garage in Rome
The accident happened close to Rome's Tiburtina station. Photo: Filippo Monteforte/AFP

The incident occurred shortly after 11pm on Tuesday night, as the woman, who has been named as Tiziana Laudani, was walking close to the Tiburtina train station.

She is thought to have fallen through a metal grate into a disused underground car park.

Two men who had been with Laudani were also injured and in a state of shock after apparently trying to save their friend.

Firefighters were still working to establish the exact cause of the accident on Wednesday morning, as well as how the three people entered the area. According to Il Messaggero, the two men told police they had gone into the square to get a better view of some shooting stars.

The square has been closed to traffic for seven years; in 2009, works began on building an underground car park, but the contractors responsible went bust, and the area has been left to fall into disrepair.

Protesters have complained about the danger of the area on several occasions.

“It breaks our hearts that our many efforts were not enough to get the area's most important square redeveloped so that this tragedy could be avoided,” said one local activist Fabrizio Montanini, according to La Repubblica.

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ROME

Body of missing American tourist found in Rome’s River Tiber

The body of a missing 21-year-old tourist was found in the River Tiber on Thursday morning, according to media reports.

Body of missing American tourist found in Rome's River Tiber

Elijah Oliphant, from Dallas, Texas, was on holiday with his family in Rome when he went missing several days ago.

Oliphant’s parents reported his disappearance after he left his hotel room shortly after midnight on May 24th and did not return.

Hotel security footage showed him leaving the premises wearing a white undershirt and pyjama bottoms, which he was wearing when he was found.

Oliphant’s corpse was reportedly spotted by passersby near the Ponte Sisto bridge in Rome’s Trastevere district around 10am on Thursday morning. His body was positively identified by his parents.

Members of the fire brigade and river police who recovered the body say there were no obvious signs of violence, but an autopsy will be conducted to determine the cause of death. Trastevere police are reportedly investigating the matter.

The Oliphant family had arrived in Rome for a holiday on May 23rd. When Elijah went missing the following day, his parents launched an urgent appeal to help find their son.

His disappearance was featured on the missing persons television show, Chi l’ha visto (‘Who’s seen them?’) on May 25th.

Several foreigners have been found drowned in the Tiber in recent years, though there are no indication that any of the incidents are linked.

In 2016, the body of 19-year-old American student Beau Solomon was recovered from the river.

Rough sleeper Massimo Galioto was charged involuntary manslaughter in the case, but was ultimately acquitted in 2020.

Prosecutors said that Galioto pushed Solomon in the course of a violent argument. Galioto’s defense team acknowledged that the two had argued but said the student had accidentally slipped.

In May 2019, 37-year-old Imen Chatbouri, a former athletics champion from Tunisia, was found dead in the Tiber after a night out. CCTV footage later showed she had been pushed from the Ponte Sisto bridge.

A then-26-year-old man whose advances she had rejected earlier that evening was convicted of her murder in November 2021.

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