Workers found human remains in a field while working on a construction site for a Costco store in Redding, CA. Authorities hired an anthropology team from California State University, Chico, to investigate. Later, Native American consultants arrived to oversee the excavation and removal.
Police cordoned off the area and halted construction. However, work resumed after surveyors inspected the site.
"Due to the large expanse of area surrounding the initially secured area, it was determined any further searching could not be continued," Redding police posted on Facebook.
The anthropologists and Native American monitors came to the same conclusion; the skeletal remains were not ancient or prehistoric.
"We don't know how long (the remains) have been there, the age, gender, and we don't know if the (person was) a victim of a crime. But, we do know they are not historical remains; they are not something from 100 years ago or more," Redding police Sgt. John Sheldon said Monday.
The large field that is the construction site had previously been an informal tent city for the homeless, and there have been suggestions that the skeleton could belong to one of the homeless people who passed away in the brush outside the camp. There is also the possibility of a criminal dumping the remains in the area.
The Redding Police Department Detective Division has opened a tip line searching for clues for the person's identity. In the meantime, police forensics intends to determine gender, age, height, and signs of trauma.