Owner’s search for pet chicken leads to human remains

Published: Jun. 23, 2022 at 5:01 PM EDT
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WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. (WPBF) – A runaway chicken led a Florida man to stumble upon a gruesome discovery.

The chicken escaped from a yard in West Palm Beach Tuesday afternoon, leading his owner, James, to the empty lot next door. That’s when an object caught his eye.

“I just found something weird and I kick it, and when I see something like a skull, it was scary, and I said, ‘I don’t know what this is,’” James said.

James called the police and stood by.

After the police examine the object, they confirmed James’ observation. He had found a human skull, and there were more skeletal remains buried just inches below the surface.

“It’s weird, you know, I never expected that thing in the back of my house,” James said.

James and his wife moved to the U.S. from Guatemala three years ago in hopes of a better life.

Now, just feet from his home, authorities say they found almost every bone of an adult that had been there for a few years.

Mike Jachles with the West Palm Beach police said it was too early in the examination to determine the gender of the remains or if there was any trauma to the body.

Anthropologists and forensic scientists have cleared the area and removed the remains, but James says his neighborhood will never be the same.

“Humans have feelings, and it affects you,” he said.

Forensic investigators hope to use DNA to find out who the person was.

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