Jogging club finds decomposed woman's body in DeLand

Body found in wooded area off Gasline Road

DeLAND, Fla. - A partially decomposed woman's body was found Wednesday by runners who smelled something in a wooded area in DeLand, police said.

Police responded at 7:50 p.m. Wednesday to an area off Gasline Road, just east of Lake Winnemissett. A running club was on a trail that passes through the wooded area when they discovered the partially clothed body, DeLand Police Chief Jason Umberger said.

Umberger said there is nothing that indicated how the woman died or who she is. He said there are no local missing person's cases he is aware of.

“I want to stress to the public that at this time we have no evidence to definitively suggest that her death was the result of foul play," Umberger said. "Alternatively, we have no definitive evidence to refute that she may have died of natural causes or a medical episode."

Forensic examiners will try to determine how long ago the woman died and for how long she has been in the woods but Florida weather may make that difficult, Umberger said. He estimated the body has been there for weeks, possibly months.

“Maybe there is somebody out there that hasn’t seen someone in a while and maybe they’re concerned we’d like to hear from you,” said the chief.

Detectives are working to determine the woman's identity as the investigation continues, police said.

"There are a couple of things that we may hope to use to identify her, but there’s not a lot out there really," Umberger said.

An autopsy of the woman is scheduled for Thursday morning.

Anyone with information about a female who may be missing or whose whereabouts are unknown is asked to call the DeLand Police Department at 386-626-7400 or leave an anonymous tip at Crimewatchfl.com.

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