Body parts found near famed Hollywood sign

LOS ANGELES Thu Jan 19, 2012 9:54am IST

Los Angeles County coroners and Los Angeles police officers are seen in Bronson Canyon, where dog walkers discovered an unidentified man's head yesterday in Los Angeles, California, January 18, 2012. REUTERS/Al Seib/Pool

Los Angeles County coroners and Los Angeles police officers are seen in Bronson Canyon, where dog walkers discovered an unidentified man's head yesterday in Los Angeles, California, January 18, 2012.

Credit: Reuters/Al Seib/Pool

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LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Detectives investigating a severed human head found in the hills below the famed Hollywood sign discovered hands and feet they believe are from the same body on Wednesday, a Los Angeles police spokesman said.

The body parts were uncovered during a search of the 4,200-acre Griffith Park, where two female hikers came across the head in a plastic bag on Tuesday, Los Angeles Police Commander Andrew Smith said.

Authorities said they were confident the head, hands and feet were all removed from the same body.

The hands were found separately but in the same general area as the head, one by a cadaver dog and the other several hours later by a crime scene investigator, Smith said.

A Los Angeles County Coroner's Office investigator came across the feet half a mile below the Hollywood sign near hiking trails.

The victim has been described as a man 40 and 60 years old.

The Hollywood sign on Mount Lee above Los Angeles originally read "Hollywoodland" and was created to promote a housing development in 1923. The last few letters deteriorated in the late 1940s and the part that remained was restored in 1978.

Griffith Park, which sits in the hills above metropolitan Los Angeles, is the largest municipal park with urban wilderness area in the United States, according to a city website.

(Additional reporting by Mary Slosson; Editing by Cynthia Johnston and Doina Chiacu)

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