A burning body was discovered hanging from a tree near a merry-go-round in Los Angeles’ sprawling Griffith Park on Tuesday afternoon, officials said.
A park visitor was walking northeast of Griffith Observatory, not far from the Los Angeles Zoo, at around 12:30 p.m. when they noticed a tree on fire with a human body at the center of it, according to police.
The passerby alerted park rangers to the gruesome discovery, and they summoned the police.
By the time police officers and firefighters arrived at the scene, the person hanging from a tree was already dead, reported NBC Los Angeles.
As of Wednesday morning, the victim has not been identified, but Margaret Stewart, a spokesperson for the Los Angeles Fire Department, told Los Angeles Daily News the body belonged to a woman.
Authorities said they believe the victim was someone who visited the park regularly and was possibly a transient person, according to reporting by the Los Angeles Times.
Police said there were no signs of foul play and they were investigating the incident as a suicide.
“It appears to be self-immolation,” LAPD detective Michael Ventura told the station ABC7. “This is going to be somebody who brought some gasoline, brought some lighters. We have had.. they are rare, but we do have cases where people will self-immolate.”
A coroner will conduct an investigation to determine the exact cause and manner of death.