KNOXVILLE, Tenn. - The hunt for the source of a foul odor ended with the discovery of a decomposing body under the deck of a family's home in west Knoxville.
The body was found by a mother who was having an Easter egg hunt for her 4-year-old child in the back yard, according to Knoxville police. Officials said the body had been there for about two weeks.
The woman told police she had smelled a foul odor outside her home on Forest View Road for several days. She tried to find the source of the smell a couple of times during the week to no avail.
When someone cut the woman's grass earlier this week, she asked the person mowing to search for whatever was creating the foul odor in the yard. The person cutting the grass also did not notice the corpse beneath the deck.
Wednesday at 7:19 p.m., the mother noticed the smell again during the Easter egg hunt and was finally able to locate the body.
The deck is large and relatively low to the ground. The space beneath it grows dark and narrow where it connects to the house. Police said the body was in a spot deep beneath the deck around 15 to 20 feet from the outer edge.
After seeing initial autopsy results, Knoxville police said they believe the man died from a medical condition, but they're still waiting until the final autopsy is complete before listing the cause of death as natural.
Investigators still don't know the identity of the body because they had little to go on during the initial discovery. The man didn't have identification and the body had decomposed to the point police couldn't take point fingerprints in the field. He didn't have any scars or tattoos but did have extensive dental work.
Police looked through missing persons reports to see if the body's description matched any in the database but none did.
KPD's Major Crimes Unit is conducting the investigation.