Authorities in California say the body of a man who had been missing most of this year was found by a local woman as she attempted to bury a deceased pet.
According to the New York Post, the unidentified Modesto woman was in the backyard of the home she had recently moved into when she found the apparent human remains last week.
She was reportedly in the process of burying a pet cat at the time.
The Stanislaus County Sheriff’s Office subsequently identified the remains as those of 26-year-old Jacob Sutton-Bubeck, a local man reported missing by his brother on February 10.
Reports indicate his sibling last saw him alive on January 25, as reported by KCRA.
Investigators say a coroner’s report relied on dental records to positively identify the man.
According to reports, authorities have launched a homicide probe in response to the news. That determination came on Tuesday, two days after the homeowner reported finding the remains.
Detective Cory Brown said the decomposed state of Sutton-Bubeck’s remains made it “impossible to identify a specific date that Jacob was murdered or when he was buried.”
He explained that investigators will continue collecting evidence and conducting interviews with “people who may have seen him after that date to narrow down a specific timeline.”
As of the latest reports available, no arrests had been made in connection with the discovery.
Investigators say they are hoping to find “someone who has intimate knowledge of this crime and how it was committed,” encouraging anyone with information to contact Brown by calling 209-567-4485.
[Featured image: Jacob Sutton-Bubeck, Stanislaus County Sheriff’s Department]