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Body found; murder suspected

The body, hidden by overgrown brush, may have been there for days.

Nobody had noticed the decomposing body of a woman who lay amid palmettos and wild grass, not far from a bus stop.

But people came by the dozens Saturday to watch detectives mingle beyond strung yellow tape and to get a glimpse of the signs of what investigators said was probably murder.

Two Vietnamese men found the woman's body about 9:30 a.m. Saturday at M.L. King (Ninth) St. and Sixth Avenue S as they looked for fresh bamboo to peel and make soup, said police Lt. Gary Hitchcox.

"There's enough there for me to say we're investigating a homicide," he said.

Although detectives would not say whether they found obvious signs of trauma or whether the woman was clothed, they did say she apparently had been dead several days.

The body was described as that of a black woman in her 20s. Investigators were able to identify her late Saturday, but wouldn't disclose her name until relatives were notified. The cause of death was unknown Saturday, investigators said.

As investigators put evidence in paper sacks, residents gathered across the street for a peek at the spot where the body was found. But the view mostly was blocked by trees and brush alongside Booker Creek.

"They need to cut all of that down," said Carolynn Riggins, 41, who lives a block away. "You never know who's going to jump out of there and grab you and hurt you."