Dump workers sniffed out a mummified body at a landfill in west-central Florida in a new load of trash that came in. The incident happened after two men cleaned out a rental home and cut down what they thought was a hanging mannequin in the garage. They thought the so-called mannequin was a Halloween prank, so they disposed of it.
After the "body" was taken to the dump, workers there detected a terrible odor on Thursday and called authorities, Reuters reports on July 18. The two men who were hired to clean the rental home told authorities they thought the body was a mannequin, but it was a corpse in a "mummified state," said Denise Moloney, a spokeswoman for the Hernando County Sheriff's Office.
Detectives learned after interviewing the house cleaners that they weren't trying to cover up anything and ruled out foul play. Moloney says the mummified body found at the landfill was laying on top of the garbage in the back of a pickup. She said someone desperate to hide a body most likely wouldn't do something like that.
After further investigation, authorities surmise that Jeremy Witforth, 33, hanged himself within the past several weeks. An autopsy is being conducted to determine his cause of death.
According to the Tampa Tribune Witforth left a suicide note scribbled on the wall of the house his body was found in. He rented the home with his girlfriend and several children before they broke up and were evicted, the report says.
The Hernando County Sheriff's Office is working on this "very unusual death investigation." Most would agree that finding a mummified body at a landfill is "very unusual." No charges have been filed yet.