PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — An investigation is underway after Philadelphia police say fire crews discovered a burnt body in a Logan alleyway. The discovery happened shortly before 6 a.m. Thursday in the 5200 block of North Marshall Street.
“Police and fire department, they were banging on my door and they said somebody was murdered in the back,” said Antonia Elliot, a neighbor. “That could have been me. My family’s calling me from Colorado and everything, thinking it was me. But it’s cruel whoever it is.”READ MORE: WATCH LIVE: Montgomery County, Pennsylvania Officials Join With Area Hospital Leadership To Discuss COVID Surge
Neighbors watched in horror as homicide detectives combed for clues in the alley near North Marshall Street in Logan, where police say a woman’s remains were found burning just before 6 a.m. Thursday.
The victim’s body was discovered just next to Thurgood Marshall School’s parking lot.
“You can’t even start your day today with nothing but this,” one neighbor told CBS3. “And it’s not right, and it’s not fair to the people in this neighborhood.”
According to police, the Philadelphia Fire Department got a call for what was believed to be a brush fire at the address. When crews extinguished the fire, they discovered the body.
One neighbor initially believed someone set garbage on fire before she called 911.
“It was a bunch of people laughing at the fact. I’m thinking, ‘it’s trash, it’s trash, they burning trash,’ whatever,” Tiffany Jenkins, who called 911, said. “It was a whole person.”READ MORE: WATCH LIVE: Philadelphia Health Department To Provide A COVID-19 Update
The victim is a woman estimated to be between her 20s and 30s. Police said there was a blood trail from the street, but have not said what caused the woman’s death.
Inspector DF Pace said, “We have not discovered any accelerants or any evidence of that. But given the nature of the fire, which was somewhat substantial, we believe some accelerant must have been used.”
Police are now trying to figure out if the woman died near the area her body was found or somewhere else before her remains were transported, dumped and set on fire.
“Police discovered there was a trail of blood leading from the 5200 block of North Marshall back that alleyway to where the body was found,” Pace said.
The discovery left some in the area shaken.
“For us to find a body on this block. We got kids around here. This is not good. I feel like right now this is not safe,” the neighbor said.
The school’s operations were not impacted by the investigation.MORE NEWS: Dump Truck, 3 Other Vehicles Involved In Chester County Crash On Route 30
CBS3’s Howard Monroe and Matt Petrillo contributed to this report.