NEW PORT RICHEY — A decomposing body was found near New Port Richey on Thursday morning, according to the Pasco County Sheriff's Office.
The body appeared to be that of an adult, detectives said. They would not say if it was male or female.
Someone called 911 about 11:15 a.m. to report the body, said Sheriff's Office spokeswoman Melanie Snow. She said the body was "highly decomposed" and in a wooded, tree-covered area near the intersection of Little Road and Youth Lane.
The Pinellas-Pasco Medical Examiner's Office took custody of the body to determine its identification and the cause of death. Given the level of decomposition, and without an autopsy, it was impossible to tell whether the person had been killed or died of natural causes, Snow said.
Once an identification is established, detectives will determine whether the body has any connection to a cold case. It was found near a homeless camp, Snow said, so detectives were looking into the possibility that the person was homeless.