Sheriff deputies from San Bernardino made a particularly gruesome discovery on Tuesday night when they uncovered six dead bodies in the Mojave Desert.
The as-yet-unidentified victims were located at a remote crossroads off Highway 395 outside the small community of El Mirage, about 50 miles northeast of Los Angeles.
Five of the bodies were located near a bullet-riddled SUV, and a sixth body was found in the early hours of Wednesday morning as officers performed an overnight search of the area. All the victims were pronounced dead at the scene.
A press release from the Sheriff’s Department states that deputies were called Tuesday evening, January 23, to a remote desert area at Lessing Avenue and Shadow Mountain Road to perform a welfare check after gunshots were reported.
The officers then uncovered a shocking crime scene.
On Tuesday night, San Bernardino Sheriff’s spokesperson Mara Rodriguez told reporters that it would take a long time for investigators to search the area and sift through the evidence. She added, “It’ll be several hours still before we are ready for anybody to be removed from the scene.”
Rodriguez did not go into any further information about how the victims died, nor did she comment on their age or gender. However, the incident is being treated as a homicide.Watch the Latest on our YouTube Channel
Six bodies found in San Bernardino County: El Mirage murders are ‘heartbreaking’ says Sheriff’s Department
The spokesperson also stated that due to the area’s remoteness, the police had requested help from the California Highway Patrol’s Aviation Division.
Finally, Rodrigeuz said that whatever the investigators uncover, it will be “heartbreaking,” but they will do their best to solve the crime as quickly as possible.
The cops also confirmed there have been no arrests and stressed that this is an ongoing investigation and further information will be made public when it’s available.
El Mirage deaths: San Bernardino murder scene is strewn with debris
There were two vehicles at the crime scene: a blue Chevrolet Blazer SUV that had shattered windows and was riddled with bullet holes and there was another white SUV.
The crime scene area was reportedly strewn with broken bottles, cardboard, and rubber tires. The police have used yellow tape to mark off a large area of the desert scrubland, and media helicopters have reported numerous yellow markers dotted around the area.
According to NBCLA, a local family informed them that they were concerned a missing family member might be among the victims.
San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department asks that anyone with information about this case contact the Specialized Investigations Division at (909) 890-4904. Callers can remain anonymous and contact We-Tip at 800-78CRIME or www.wetip.com.