BASSETT (CBSLA.com) — The upper torso of a woman found Monday at a waste treatment plant is believed to be related to the human remains found this weekend at a similar facility in Carson.
The human remains of the woman, who was possibly Hispanic, were found by maintenance workers at a facility operated by the Sanitation Districts of Los Angeles County in the 1900 block of Workman Mill Road in Bassett, near the 60 and 605 freeways.
The remains were discovered in one of the facility’s water reclamation plant pools.
“During a check for a plug in a line, they discovered a human torso,” sheriff’s Lt. Mike Rosson said. “That human torso appears to be related to…remains that were found in Carson on Saturday morning.”
A calf and a foot were found Saturday at the Joint Water Pollution Control Plant, at 24501 South Figueroa St. in Carson, also owned by the Sanitation Districts of Los Angeles County.
Raw sewage is treated at both the Carson and Bassett plants, then sent out to the ocean or used as recycled water. None of the sewage that arrives at either plant arrives from a storm channel.
“Anything coming into this plant comes in through a 72-inch line. It goes through a centrifugal pump, so you can imagine what kind of damage to a person’s body would happen going through a centrifugal pump,” Rosson said.
Investigators believe the victim was likely put into the system through a manhole or sewer street cover.
“The line would have to be big enough to transport a body. Our understanding is from east of the 605 Freeway to about the La Verne/San Dimas area and from the 60 Freeway north, it could have come up from any of those arteries,” said Rosson.
Authorities also said there is an extra limb missing they haven’t located. It could turn up in another sanitation facility.
The woman’s cause of death is unknown and will be determined by the Los Angeles County Department of Medical Examiner-Coroner.
The death, however, is being investigated as a homicide, Rosson said.