Female's body found burning on street in Oakland

July 14, 2011 11:39:00 AM PDT
Oakland police are trying to unravel a gruesome mystery that was discovered in the quiet, upscale Rockridge area. They received several calls about a burning body early Thursday morning at Ivanhoe and Chabot roads.

"A body was found about 4:40 this morning. There are fire injuries to the body. It appears to be a female, we are not sure right now, unknown race, unknown age," said Oakland Police Lt. Brian Medeiros.

One investigator said evidence so far suggests the victim is not a resident of this area. A car was heard leaving the area and the neighborhood has easy access to Highway 24.

"The body could have been brought here. It could have been dumped here. We don't know why this area," said Medeiros.

"I'm just shocked. This is a quiet neighborhood and you don't find bodies on streets," said resident Mark Aaronson.

The Rockridge neighborhood has tree-lined clean streets, large homes and neighbors who all appear to know each other. But investigators said the nice features of this neighborhood may have made it a target for a place to get rid of a body. It's quiet and the streets are very dark at night. But this block of Ivanhoe Road does appear to be very secure.

"It's a very quiet street and this street has their own private protection. The neighbors pay for private security people to go up and down the street," said resident Christine Garofoli.

Investigators think they know how the victim was killed, but they don't want to release details because it might jeopardize the investigation. The coroner said it will take awhile to identify the victim.

The police are asking for the public's help in identifying the victim and are reviewing missing persons cases for a possible lead.

Anyone with information on the case is asked to call the Police Department's homicide unit at (510) 238-7230.

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