Tampa police are asking for the public’s help in identifying a potential crime victim.
Fisherman called the police on Thursday afternoon after spotting what they thought a human body part floating in McKay Bay, in the southeast part of the city, according to the Tampa Bay Times. Police confirmed it was human remains.
Another man fishing in the same area on Friday morning, Stuart Welch, told NBC affiliate WFLA in Tampa, that he called police after finding another leg, though police did not confirm that it was human remains.
“I saw what looked like a lump of dead fish at first, but as it floated closer to me it started to resolve into what looks like the lower half of a human leg,” Welch told WFLA.
After discovering yet more remains on Friday, reported the Times, the Tampa police issued a statement identifying that the body part recovered on Thursday was a human leg.
The leg, the statement said, had a distinctive tattoo “just beneath the lower right calf” of three intertwined red hearts with blue-and-white banners bearing three names: Sean, Greg and Zach.
In a Friday evening press conference, Tampa Police Interim Chief Ruben Delgado asked the public for its assistance in identifying the person who might have had the tattoo.
“We’re asking anyone with any information in reference that tattoo to please give us a call,” he said. The police are also interested in speaking with anyone who might have noticed something suspicious in the area the last few days.
He said that the Tampa Police, Hillsborough County Sheriff and Fish and Wildlife were continuing to search for more remains, but did not specific what other parts had been found.
“We’re working closely with the [medical examiner’s] office to determine cause of death, how something like this would’ve happened,” he said, refusing to speculate on how the body ended up in pieces.
“We gotta remember, that’s somebody’s loved one,” he explained. “That’s somebody’s family’s member.”
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