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Torsos, body parts discovered floating in Detroit waterways

The dismembered bodies of a man and a woman were discovered in the Detroit River and in a nearby canal. WDIV's Shawn Ley reports.

The torsos of a man and woman, and later body parts believed to belong to the two, were found floating in Detroit-area waterways on Tuesday morning, the Detroit Free Press reported.

"This was vicious," Commander Steve Dolunt of the Detroit Police Department told the paper. "It looks like they were sending a message. It’s not just a normal — if there is a normal — homicide.”

A U.S. Coast Guard officer on border patrol responded to a call from a fisherman who had spotted a torso floating in Fox Creek, just off the Detroit River around 6 a.m., WDIV TV reported. The Coast Guard boat crew came across the second one as they were responding to the first.

 The Coast Guard handed the case over to the Detroit Police Homicide Unit, the Free Press reported, citing U.S. Coast Guard spokesman Lt. Justin Westmiller.

The medical examiner was working to determine the identity of the victims and cause of death, said Detroit Police Department spokeswoman Christine Rozier.

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Several hours later, a man fishing in the Detroit River called police to report a gruesome discovery, which included a white leg with polished toenails, two other white legs and a cordless circular saw lying on the bottom of the river in about 3 feet of water where the river meets Lake St. Clair, the Detroit Free Press reported.

The Detroit River flows from Lake St. Clair in the north to Lake Erie in the south, forming a part of the U.S.-Canada border with the densely populated cities of Detroit, Mich. on one side and Windsor, Ontario on the other.

Homicide detectives and evidence collectors and swarmed the area, KSDK reported Tuesday afternoon.

Investigators told KSDK that the woman's body has a distinctive tattoo, but would not describe it at this stage in the case.

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