A man's body was found in a vehicle buried in mud by a severe storm in Los Angeles County, but authorities aren't certain that it was the storm that killed him: The sheriff's department has sent homicide detectives to investigate the grim find made by firefighters Tuesday afternoon, the Los Angeles Times reports. The vehicle was under several feet of mud near a road in Palmdale and if foul play wasn't involved, the death may be the first one confirmed to have been caused by last Thursday's storm, which left scores of cars and trucks stuck in tons of mud on roadways in the region,the AP reports. Police say the victim is a white man in his 40s.
Palmdale resident Stacy Horwood says she believes the vehicle is one that she saw disappear into a ditch after driving through several feet of water during the storm. "It went nose first, and then you saw the back axle just continue to sink down, and that was it," she tells KTLA. "The water just kept going and going and going, and nothing came up." She says she called 911 at the time, but authorities didn't find the vehicle and it was only uncovered after she pressured them to have another look. "My heart's been breaking every day," she says. (Last month, a flash flood turned a first date deadly in San Bernardino National Forest.)