LYNN — A person walking his dog found a burned human body inside a Walnut Street park Thursday afternoon, Lynn Police confirmed.
The grim discovery was made just after 2 p.m., according to Lynn Police Lt. Michael Kmiec. The death is considered suspicious, he said.
The body was located at Frey Park next to Breeds Pond, near the southern edge of Lynn Woods. The park, dominated by a large playground and small ballfields, sits next to a quiet residential neighborhood and around the corner from Breed Middle School.
Joining Lynn officers at the scene were State Police troopers and investigators from the Essex County District Attorney’s office, Kmiec said.
Scott Beauchamp was walking his dog in the park when he came across the body in the woods. He thought it was fake at first and called over his friend and neighbor, Jim Faieta, to help him process what he was seeing.
“I called him over to make sure,” Beauchamp said. “I don’t think I wanted to believe it was a body, but I guess it is. I wasn’t too happy when I saw it.”
Tori Faieta, Jim’s daughter and a former Daily Item employee, said seeing the burned body left her “a little rattled.”
“At first I didn’t think it was real,” she said. “I’ve never seen a dead body myself. It was pretty gruesome. I felt shocked.”
She said it looked like a nearby tree was burned as well, but authorities said it was unclear whether there had been a blaze nearby.
Carrie Kimball Monahan, a spokeswoman for the Essex County District Attorney’s office, said the gender of the body was unclear and wouldn’t elaborate on why authorities believe the death was suspicious.
“Investigators expect identification of the body will take time given the condition of the body,” she said.
As part of the investigation, she said authorities will check missing persons reports in the area and dental records to try to make a positive identification. The medical examiner will perform an autopsy.
“Everything’s being looked at,” Kimball Monahan said. “We have to find out who it is. We don’t rule anything in or out. We just try to find out who it is and go from there.”