The highly-decomposed body of a man found in the woods near Woodstock still hasn’t been identified almost a month after it was discovered, but authorities say they have a few promising leads.
The Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office is investigating two possible options in identifying the body, which was discovered July 20 by a Kennesaw State University biology student who had originally gone out looking for snakes, said Capt. Joe Perkins, spokesman for the Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigations Division.
Perkins said since the body — which is believed to be a 6-foot-tall black man between the ages of 27 and 53 — was found off South Cherokee Lane near Woodstock, several families in the metro Atlanta area have contacted the Sheriff’s Office saying the man may be one of their missing relatives.
But only two of these families have provided information which could match the body found, he said.
Perkins said the Sheriff’s Office is waiting for the families to produce the dental records and for the Georgia Bureau of Investigation to extract DNA from the remains.
Detectives have ruled out some tips because of estimations of how long the body had been at its location, he said.
“I don’t believe it’d been out there for an extended period of time,” he said, adding that the man appeared to have only been dead a few weeks.
Perkins said the cause of death also remains unknown for the man. But on the surface, the death doesn’t appear to have been violent.
“There was no visible trauma to the remains,” Perkins said. “In the clothes that we did recover, there’s no punctures, tears, rips or anything that would indicate that there was any kind of violent act.”
Once the identity of the man is learned, Perkins said investigators will start trying to “fill in the blanks” on how he died.
Almost immediately after the body was found last month, residents near the scene began to speculate about who the man was.
Jennifer Allgood, who owns the property where the body was found, said she believed he may have been a homeless person, who are rumored to pass through the neighborhood. But Perkins said that is unlikely.
“The clothing (on the man) was new, name-brand clothing,” he said. “To me, it didn’t fit a homeless person.”