Authorities in Pennsylvania made a disturbing discovery on Monday, finding that a child-sized casket spotted on a Philadelphia sidewalk contained human organs.
“The medical examiner investigator at the scene confirmed that the contents of the casket were indeed embalmed internal organs,” Philadelphia police said in a statement to HuffPost.
The small white casket was found by a passerby in the 3100 block of W. Clearfield Street, police said. No skeletal remains were found at the scene.
Chris James, who was in the neighborhood at the time of the discovery, used his cellphone to record video of responding officers opening the coffin.
“I was pretty shocked,” James told Philadelphia’s KYW-TV. “It looked like something straight out of ‘Thriller.’”
WTXF News in Philadelphia reported the lid to the casket appeared to have been pried open. That, combined with the location of the discovery, which is across from Mount Vernon Cemetery, led investigators to suspect someone dug up the coffin.
“There have been cases where people take remains or human bodies for whatever unusual reason they decide,” Chief Inspector Scott Small told KYW-TV.
A search of Mount Vernon Cemetery failed to turn up any freshly dug-up graves. Investigators have since expanded the search to other nearby cemeteries, Philadelphia Magazine reported.
The Office of the Medical Examiner is analyzing the remains. As of Wednesday afternoon, authorities had no further information to share about the case.
City police ask anyone with information to call 215-686-TIPS (8477). Callers do not have to give their names.