Investigators have identified a young woman who was seen placing a backpack that authorities suspect contained human remains in a store dumpster Monday afternoon in the Victoria Square shopping center in Chesterfield County.
About 16 hours after releasing surveillance images of the person, Chesterfield police said in an email shortly before noon Tuesday that they had identified the female in the photo.
“The investigation is ongoing. We have no additional information to release at this time,” police said.
Police responded to the strip mall at the corner of Hull Street and Genito roads about 1:50 p.m. Monday, after receiving a report that an unknown female had placed a backpack inside a dumpster behind one of the stores several hours earlier. Witnesses told police that the woman then entered the Gabe’s discount store without the backpack before leaving the area.
“An employee saw the young lady put something in the dumpster, and thought it was odd,” Chesterfield police Maj. Michael Louth said Tuesday. The employee “subsequently went out there and saw the book bag, and it had some blood on it.”
Police were called and arriving officers opened the backpack and discovered what appeared to be human remains inside.
The remains were taken to the state medical examiner’s office. An autopsy was to be conducted Tuesday to determine if the remains are those of a human.
Louth declined to say whether the remains appeared to be those of an infant.
“I’m just going to stick to possible human remains until I can have it verified,” he said.
Louth said the young woman did not purchase anything inside Gabe’s before leaving the store.
In addition to seeking to talk with the young woman about the contents of the backpack, police wanted “to make sure she’s OK and doesn’t need any medical attention,” Louth said.