Local News

Jul 15, 2010 8:51 PM by Ariel Wesler

Burned body discovered near Highway 101

An early morning fire turns into a crime scene after firefighters discover a man's body. It happened just before 4:15 a.m. about a half mile south of the Nojoqui grade, near buellton.

Santa Barbara County Sheriff's detectives are puzzled at what firefighters found while putting out an early morning fire.

"They discovered a deceased male on the side of the road. They looked around. There was no car there, said Drew Sugars," a spokesman with the Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Office.

A burned body with no identification and authorities are calling it suspicious.

"Anytime you find a body on the side of a road, it's going to raise some suspicions," Sugars said.

At this point, investigators are wondering how the man got there and whether he was even alive before the fire.

"Was this a transient who was living there and had a mishap? Was this someone who was dumped there? We don't know," Sugars said.

The body was discovered about 30 yards from the Northbound lanes of Highway 101, about a half mile south of the Nojoqui Grade. Authorities shut down the far right lane while detectives sweeped the area for clues.

"Forensics, they're very meticulous about gathering evidence and piecing together what happened so I expect them to be out there for a while," Sugars said.

A morning mystery leaving many questions unanswered. That right lane of northbound 101 has re-opened. The sheriff's office has not released the age or ethnicity of the victim. An autopsy is planned for tomorrow.

Anyone with more information to help solve this mystery should contact the Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Office.

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