RIVERSIDE (CBSLA.com) — The body of a man was found inside a trunk of a car outside a Walmart in Riverside.
The body was reportedly found inside a gold Lexus GS 300 around 4:45 p.m. outside the store located in the 5200 block of Van Buren Boulevard.
The Riverside County Sheriff’s Office said the victim was likely killed in Pomona, where the car owner lived.
Witnesses told KCAL9’s Adrianna Weingold the woman was freaking out about recognizing the dead man as her neighbor.
Detectives from the Pomona Police Department have taken over the investigation. They would not confirm how the woman knew the dead man.
The Riverside County Sheriff-Coroner was expected to determine the victim’s identity and conduct an autopsy.
Weingold said detectives were working the scene hours later trying to determine how the body got inside the car.
She reported that a shopper went to put bags in her car when she made the gruesome discovery.
The woman told police she smelled something funny — all day — but was shocked to find a body in the trunk.
“She was freaking out,” said witness Robert Lugan, “they had to put her in a squad car and take her home.”
Police would not confirm how long the dead man might have been in the trunk.
“He was around the neighborhood last night,” said witness Lugan,”and the husband didn’t like it. Told him to leave. And now she saw her neighbor in the trunk.”
“It’s hot out so it’s hard to say how long the body had been there, it won’t take long for a body to decompose in this weather,” said Sgt. Dave Amador with the Riverside Police Department.
“It’s very unusual,” Sgt. Amador said, “it’s one of a kind. I mean, we do get bodies in trunks. But to open it up and say they know him. And didn’t know they were in there, that’s unusual.”