Body found inside burning car in DeKalb County neighborhood

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DeKalb County police are investigating a body found in a burned car on Riverlake Way found early Saturday morning. 

Firefighters were called to the neighborhood after midnight Saturday when neighbors spotted a burning car in the middle of the street.

Neighbors told FOX 5's Alexa Liacko that they heard crackling and popping sounds and then saw flames from the end of their street.

When firefighters arrived, they quickly extinguished the blaze and made the horrifying discovery of a body in the vehicle.

Now detectives are trying to figure out who the victim is. Right now, they can't tell if the victim was a man or a woman.

"The body was pretty badly burned," DeKalb County police Lt. John Medina said. "We don’t have any information as to how the body ended up in the vehicle and no cause of death at this time."

A tow truck carried away the mini-van's charred framing, leaving behind broken glass, ash, and neighbors feeling on edge.

"All of my years living here, I have never seen or heard of any crime going on in this neighborhood," said resident Chase Ridley. "This is unheard-of right here."

Officers say they're not sure how the car ended up on fire, but that they suspected foul play.

"Anytime there's a person in a vehicle it's suspicious, but we just don't know," Medina said.

FOX 5's Emilie Ikeda spoke with one neighbor, who dialed 911. He said he's putting his routine evening walks on pause after the alarming incident.

"It's awful that it happened so close to home, and I wish it hadn't," the neighbor, who did not want to reveal his name, said. "It's horrible - that's all I can say - God bless the person that was in that car."

Now police are asking for the public's help to get to the bottom of the case.

If you saw anything suspicious on Riverlake Way around midnight, call DeKalb County police.