UPDATE: Human remains discovered in Tick Fire area

Detectives from the Los Angeles County Sheriff's homicide department collect a set of human remains reported in a burned area alongside Sand Canyon Road for investigation. October 26, 2019. Bobby Block / The Signal.
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By Emily Alvarenga and Caleb Lunetta

Human remains were discovered in Canyon Country near an area affected by the Tick Fire Saturday, according to Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department officials.

The remains were found near the intersection of Sand Canyon Road and Thompson Ranch Drive, per officials.

“The only thing we have is that a public works employee was working in the area and stumbled upon this,” said Deputy Morgan Arteaga of the Sheriff’s Information Bureau.

Official from the Los Angeles County Coroners office investigated human remains discovered in a burned area near the side of Sand Canyon Road Saturday afternoon. October 26, 2019. Bobby Block / The Signal.

The discovered body is not believed to be the result of the Tick Fire, according to Arteaga.

“The human remains are not burned as of this time, they were just remains found in a burned area,” said Arteaga, at approximately 3:10 p.m. on Saturday.

As investigators worked on the scene they said the public works employee had discovered a human skeleton that they believe to have been in the area for more than a year, according to Lt. Derrick Alfred, LASD Homicide Bureau.

“We don’t have any reason to believe that this is a victim of this fire or previous fires,” said Alfred. “It looks like the body may have been concealed up here or was here in the vegetation and after the fire, the body was revealed and found by the public.”

Alfred declined to comment on whether or not investigators believe foul play was involved with the death of the victim, but that the situation did appear suspicious.

Detectives from the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department investigated a set of human remains discovered in a burned area near Sand Canyon Road Saturday Afternoon. October 26, 2019. Bobby Block / The Signal.

“We can’t say for sure until the coroner investigates, but it is an odd place for … somebody to just walk up there and die,” said Alfred.

Investigators, Alfred said, over the next couple of days will be combing the area looking for any evidence or weapons that could give detectives an idea of how the body was found in the area.

“So we have a lot of work to do and we got to start looking into people that may be missing the areas,” said Alfred. “If anybody knows anybody they’ve been looking for for a while and haven’t seen (them).”

Los Angeles County Fire Department officials reported no deaths as a result of the fire in an incident update released Saturday morning.

Anyone with information can call the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department Homicide Bureau at 323-890-5500.

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