People walking along the shore of Lake Mead notified local authorities Sunday after they discovered a barrel containing human remains.
Rangers from The National Park Service uncovered the barrel near the Hemenway Harbor on the lake’s western shore.
The barrel is believed to have been stuck in the mud for approximately 40 years and was finally revealed by low water levels due to ongoing drought conditions throughout the western U.S.
“We were docking our boat to go home and heard a woman scream,” witness Shawna Hollister said. “My husband walked over and found the body. His shirt and belt were the only thing we could see over his decomposing bones.”
Authorities confirmed that the barrel contained human remains and authorities say murder was the cause of death. The person’s identity has not been confirmed by the Clark County coroner’s office. The National Park Service is working with Las Vegas Metro police to fully recover the remains.
Photographs of the barrel and body were shared by news organizations and posted to Twitter. The barrel appears to be an oil drum, and the body appears to be crouched inside.