Bartow County Sheriff Clark Millsap gave an update on a gruesome find at the Bartow County Landfill earlier this week.
"At about 12:15 p.m. [Monday], a dismembered body was located in a trash compactor dumpster that was being taken to the Bartow County landfill and about to be dumped," he said at a press conference Wednesday. "The container had been picked up from Cedar Creek Road compactor site, which is north on 41 at 15 Cedar Creek Road."
He said Bartow County Sheriff's Office investigators, along with Georgia Bureau of Investigation crime scene technicians and the local coroner's office, recovered all body parts of the unidentified woman from the trash compactor dumpster. The remains were then taken to a crime lab, where the GBI Medical Examiner's Office conducted an autopsy.
"I've been doing this for almost 35 years and I've never seen anything like this before," Millsap said. "She was cut into pieces and they packed all the pieces into each individual bags and placed them in one dumpster. Fortunately for us, and I don't mean that to sound macabre or anything like that, but fortunately, all the parts were in one location, but in different bags."
Millsap said the victim is a white female, between 5-foot-2 to 5-foot-6, possibly with red or brown hair. Her estimated weight is 150 pounds and she is believed to be somewhere in the 18-35 age range.
"The victim also has several tattoos, including one on her upper chest of two Easter lilies and a sacred heart-type design," he said.
Two names were tattooed on each of the victim's shoulder blades.
"I'm not going to release those to you in hopes that whoever does come forward that can identify the first tattoo I'm going to show you will be able to tell us what's on her back for a positive identification," he said.
The cause of death, Millsap said, is still under investigation. However, he said GBI has concluded that it was "a violent homicide."
He said no cameras are installed at the facility. Nor is there any information on a possible murder weapon or what was used to dismember the victim.
Investigators are currently cross-referencing information on the victim with missing persons cases throughout the state.
"The container that she was in was closed at approximately 5:30 p.m. on Saturday, which would've been the 11th and then picked up Monday morning and transported down to the landfill," he said. "One of the bags came open. When [a sanitation worker] opened the back of the dumpster, which is before he pushes all of the contents out, the bottom torso fell out of the bag."
GBI officials have released a sketch of what the victim may have looked like when she was alive, as well as renderings of her tattoos.
"We're asking for as much help as we can get," Millsap said. "The FBI has been in contact with us, they're going to join in with the assistance."
Anyone with information on the case is asked to call the BCSO Criminal Investigations Division at 770-382-5050, extension 6029.