escape hatch

My Ford Escape hatch door won't open. The electric lock mechanism sounds as if it is working, but the door "handle" does nothing, and it doesn't feel as
if it is connected inside to anything (no resistance). The manual says to open the door and remove the plastic on the inside to get at the door mechanism!
Any other way of opening the Hatch door of the Ford Escape when the latch handle won't work besides cutting out a hole the plastic over the lock mechanism inside?
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is there a button on the inside of the door....,like olden days before electric locks.....my 96 windstar had the same problem......switch motor took a dump..still made the unlock noise but wouldn't move a lick....maually unlocked door...removed panel....replaced switch...all is fine....ford has had some problems with them and seeing that the escape may be on warranty....take it to ford and make them fix it...that way if they have to cut anything to get inside the hatch lid...they'll have to replace it under warranty....

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