Phoenix PD investigating after coffin found buried in yard - Los Angeles News | FOX 11 LA KTTV

Phoenix PD investigating after coffin found buried in yard

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PHOENIX -

Phoenix Police and forensic specialists are working to unearth what appears to be human remains in a backyard near 16th St and Indian School Road.

Firefighters were called out Tuesday afternoon on reports of a makeshift coffin containing possible human remains.

Neighbors told us that the property was recently sold and the new owner was doing renovations and landscaping when he discovered the shallow grave.

A dozen detectives from the violent crimes bureau are in the process of digging through the earth for clues. They're being very meticulous as to not disturb any evidence. Around 10 p.m., they had lifted a large wooden box from the hole, and were in the process of attempting to get it open.

We've learned that this is not the first time police have been called to this home. Neighbors told us the people who used to live there were not friendly people.

"The gentleman that was there, basically we had heard he was a violent violent man," said Nikki Dulau.

Last year on March 2, then-41-year-old Alan Champagne held his girlfriend and 5-year-old son hostage for several hours inside the home. It ended in a gunfight.

"He shot back with a shotgun, and that's when they blew the door up and went in there and got him," said Janie Degaye.

"At this point its an investigation where we're trying to gather evidence. Anytime you come across human remains you have to treat it as a crime scene," said Phoenix Police Sgt. Tommy Thompson.

Officers are expected to stay at the scene until sunrise Wednesday and there should be an update then.

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