About 40 law enforcement officers Tuesday began tracking down leads and searching a rural area in northwest Franklin County where a homicide victim was discovered Monday afternoon.
Children discovered the body of a man shortly before 2 p.m. while riding their bicycles in a weedy area behind an abandoned house in the 1600 block of Shawnee Road, Sheriff Craig Davis said.
Franklin County Sheriff's officers and Ottawa Police went to the area and began a search, Davis said.
Investigators had learned the identity of the victim but had not released it Tuesday morning pending notification of relatives, Davis said. He identified the victim only as a man.
Davis requested assistance from the regional Major Case Squad, which brought in officers from surrounding counties of Douglas, Shawnee and Jefferson. The Kansas Bureau of Investigation is also assisting.
"They're continuing to search and talking to residents in the area," Davis said. "It's rural area, a fairly quiet area."
Shawnee Road is a well-traveled gravel road but the body was too far away to be seen from it, Davis said.
The body was taken to Frontier Forensics in Topeka where an autopsy was performed Monday night. Although a specific cause of death hasn't been released it is a homicide, Davis said. He declined to say whether officers found a possible weapon in the area where the body was found.
The children who found the body included three girls and one boy. They ranged in age from 15 to 9, Davis said. The children then informed one of their parents about their find.