An off-duty police sergeant made a grisly discovery while hunting near an area mall over the weekend.
Margate Police Sergeant Mark Ciambrone found a woman's body stuffed into a suitcase left behind the Shore Mall along Black Horse Pike in Egg Harbor Township, N.J. Sunday afternoon.
Ciambrone found the body in a wooded area near 9th and Broadway Avenues, according to police.
"This is unreal,' said Anthony Cortes Jr. who lives near where the body was found. "I can't believe this. It's so close to home, within a few hundred feet from our house."
Acting Atlantic County Prosecutor James McClain says they haven't yet identified the body.
"The remains appear to be human remains of a female," McClain said. "Age and race are undetermined at this point."
Police released photos of tattoos on the woman's right wrist and right foot and are seeking the public's help in identifying her.
Investigators were spotted searching for clues several yards away from the dig site. It's unknown at this time how long the remains were there.
"Although the body was in a relatively advanced stage of decomposition, there were several identifiable tattoos on the body," McClain said. "More specific information about those tattoos will be released at the conclusion of the autopsy to assist in identification."