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Witness heard sirens before spotting victim’s feet sticking out of ditch

Posted at 9:35 AM, Sep 17, 2014
and last updated 2014-09-18 11:35:09-04

UPDATE: Henrico Police said the man found dead along Byron Street Wednesday was a 35-year-old man from eastern Henrico.

"Family notifications have been made, however since this is still considered a suspicious death investigation and not a homicide investigation, we are not releasing his identity at this time," Henrico Police spokeswoman Capt. Linda Toney wrote in an email.

HENRICO COUNTY, Va. -- Police are investigating a "suspicious death" after a man's body was found  lying along side a Henrico County road.

A person saw the body along the 2400 block of Byron Street, near Mechanicsville Turnpike and East Laburnum Avenue, at about 7:35 a.m.  The person called 911, Henrico Police spokeswoman Lt. Linda Toney said.

Body found on Byron Street in Henrico County (PHOTO: Michael Latimer)

Body found on Byron Street in Henrico County (PHOTO: Michael Latimer)

"Fire and Rescue personnel responded and declared the male deceased at the scene," Toney said. "At this time, the cause of death is unknown."

After a stop for a quick cup of coffee, Andrew McClenney zipped down Byron Street to do some yard work for a friend. But he was stopped in his tracks when he walked by a dead body in a ditch.

“Yeah, it kind of shook me up. He was face down on his stomach and his feet were in the air. He was stretched out,” McClenney said.

McClenney’s friend, Bobby Morrow, wondered why he hadn’t shown up yet.

“I happened to see him out the window. I saw him standing there and he never moved. I thought, are some bees after him? He just stood still," Morrow said.

As Morrow walked his grandson to a bus stop one block away from where the body was, he got a better glimpse of the commotion going on.

“I heard sirens and saw police cars. Right away I got nervous. I didn't know what was going on. That’s when I saw feet sticking out of the ground," Morrow explained.

Now police have mystery on their hands trying to ID the victim and determine if there was foul play.

Neighbors say it’s just too much to take since the scene on Byron Street takes them back to the time a well-known convenience store owner was shot and killed in his store right next to where this body was found.

“That was a tragedy too. He was a good man, so we are still in shock over that. We haven’t even gotten over that" Morrow said.

Henrico police are still calling this death suspicious.

If you have any information that can help them solve this case, you are urged to call crime stoppers at 780-1000.

Anyone with information about the man's death is asked call Henrico Police at (804) 501-5000 or Crime Stoppers at 804-780-1000.