Surprise police find 3 bodies in burned vehicle


Video report by Tanya Mendis

Posted on June 9, 2014 at 5:51 PM

Updated Wednesday, Jun 11 at 10:28 AM

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SURPRISE, Ariz. (AP) -- Police in Surprise say three charred bodies have been found in the back of a pickup truck that burned in a remote desert area.

Investigators say the deaths appear suspicious and it's going to take some time to identify the bodies.

Police received a call at 2:45 Monday about a vehicle on fire in the area of 219th Avenue and Sun Valley Parkway.

After the fire was extinguished, the vehicle was initially too hot to start the investigation. Later, police spokesman Sgt. Mike Donovan says three bodies were found in the burned-out truck.

Television footage showed the truck with a yellow tarp covering the vehicle's bed.

Police say the investigation is just beginning. "We have to identify people in the vehicle," say Donovan. "We have to identify what occurred, the registered owner of the vehicle. We're going to reach out to family and friends.  It's going to take some time; we're going to be here awhile."

Donovan says no information on the vehicle is being released, and the bodies have not been identified.

Police say the crime is an unusual one. "I've been here 20 years and we haven't had one like this in the area," says Donovan. "Anything's possible at any given time. So just because we are one of the safest cities in the nation doesn't mean we don't have issues."