Train decapitates man in Phx; accident or body dump?

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By Catherine Holland By Catherine Holland

PHOENIX -- A man in his 40s was decapitated when he was hit by a train in Phoenix Friday morning.

It happened in the area of 27th Avenue and Lincoln Street. The train track are just north of Lincoln Street. The train's conductor called the police regarding a body on tracks at about 7 a.m.

At this point, investigators are not sure is this was an accident or if the man died elsewhere and his body dumped on the train tracks.

Right now, however, detectives are treating the incident as a death investigation, not a homicide.

No other details were immediately available.

There is some thought that the man, who has not been identified, was riding the Union Pacific train illegally and might have tried to jump between cars, slipping and falling beneath the cars while the train was moving slowly.

Until detectives can determine exactly what happened and how it happened, both the body and the train will remain in place, exactly as officers found them.

Police expected to be on the scene for several hours and planned to keep 27th Avenue between Lincoln and Jackson streets closed until they could complete their investigation. They hoped to be able to move the train, which was blocking 27th Avenue, and reopen the street by noon.

Union Pacific police officers are assisting the Phoenix Police Department.