Cops Thought It Was a Prank. Then They Saw the Head

Decaying head was found in Oakland backyard
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Oct 30, 2018 2:04 AM CDT
People Find Head in Yard, Bring It to Police
An Oakland Police Department patch on a uniform.   (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

(Newser) – Police investigators on Monday were trying to determine whether a decaying human head found in an Oakland backyard belongs to a recently discovered headless corpse, the AP reports. People visiting an Oakland apartment complex last week found the head in the grassless yard with a couple of trees and took it to a police station, Oakland Officer Johnna Watson said. Officers at the police station initially thought it was a Halloween prank but then saw the head inside the car of the people who found it, Sgt. Michael Cardoza told reporters after the discovery.

"I can say in my years of service, I've never had a human skull delivered to the police station," Cardoza told KGO-TV. Homicide detectives interviewed all the residents of the three-apartment building, and it didn't appear they were involved, he said. It's unclear how long the head had been in yard, but Cardoza said it was decomposed and "had a little bit of flesh on it." The Alameda County coroner's office is working to identify the remains and determine whether it's connected to a decapitated body found in "close proximity" in late September. (In August, another headless corpse was found in a fish tank in a San Francisco home.)

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