Unidentified Body Found in Eel River Possible Victim of Homicide
Law enforcement is treating the human remains found this Sunday near Stafford as a possibly new homicide. Humboldt County Coroner Ernie Stewart said that the skeleton found partially in the Eel River by a person canoeing, “still had tissue.” That he said indicates that the person probably died less that six months ago. “We have [no known missing persons in that area] that match that time frame,” he said. “We are treating it as if it were a homicide.”
At the same time, Stewart said, “We saw nothing that would indicate cause of death.”
The skeleton, which Stewart said was “remarkably intact,” still had 90% of all its bones including its entire head and both legs. However, there was, he said, only “a small amount of tissue.”
“There was some clothing, mainly some remnants of pants,” he explained. But, he said, there was not enough left to determine the manufacturer.
Steward said that while the body didn’t match that of any known missing person, the body could belong to either a transient or someone who didn’t keep in touch with family and friends. He added that while the body could belong to someone that just slipped and fell into the water, the body could also be a victim of a homicide. “There are bodies buried in these hills that we didn’t know they were missing,” he said.
Earlier Chapter: Human Remains Discovered in the River Near Stafford Sunday