PAULDING COUNTY, Ga. (FOX 5 Atlanta) - Paulding County investigators are trying to find out who killed someone and then set a car on fire with the body inside.
It happened in rural Paulding County on Vinson Mountain Crossing. Jeri Purdy has lived in the Vinson Mountain community for 30 years and never seen or heard of a gruesome discovery like this before.
FOX 5 News found ashes and even parts of a burned car still visible on Vinson Mountain Crossing in Rockmart just outside of a fence where the old Annewekee Children's home used to be.
Deputies said a passerby discovered the car in flames around 12:50 a.m. Monday.
Paulding County deputies closed the rural road for several hours as firefighters doused ferocious flames, only to make the disturbing discovery.
"My understanding, the vehicle was on fire visibly when they arrived and was fully engulfed. Once they put the fire out, they discovered the body inside," Deputy Tyler McSwain recalled.
Area residents from Polk, Paulding, and Harrelson counties hoped the victim is not a neighbor.
"I don't think it's local. I hope it is not local, but I can't say, " nearby resident Jeri Perdy commented.
Paulding County authorities said the remains were so badly burned they cannot determine whether the victim is a man or a woman.
They also have not talked about the type of car that was set on fire and have called in the State Fire Marshall's Office and the Georgia Bureau of Investigation for what they believe is an arson and murder investigation.
"The victim's remains were taken to the GBI crime lab in Atlanta to ascertain who the victim was and what may have happened," Deputy McSwain concluded.
Anyone with information on this case should call 770-443-3015.