Shortly after 2 p.m. on Tuesday afternoon, investigators with the Macon County Sheriff's Office and United States Forest Service responded to a 911 call in the Coweeta Lab area of Macon County. Bear hunters called in to report that they had discovered an abandoned vehicle and a deceased white female in a creek.
The vehicle was parked at a gated service road off of Coweeta Lab Road leading into the Nantahala National Forest. A couple feet from the gate is an embankment leading down to a creek where the body was found.
Investigators were able to identify the female based on evidence at the scene, as the person had been reported missing by a friend the previous day. “At this time we are not releasing the name of the woman due to the fact we are having difficulty locating the next of kin,” said Sheriff Robbie Holland.
Holland did state that the female is approximately 39 years old and is not originally from Macon County nor does she have family in the area as far as law enforcement can determine. Macon County Sheriff's Department is working with a neighboring state to locate family members.
Concluding the preliminary investigation, law enforcement is not concerned about the safety of the community and do not feel any foul play is involved.
The cause of death will be released pending autopsy and after a positive determination of the death can be made. “We do not feel there is any need for concern regarding the safety of the community in that area,” said Holland. “Investigators are confident as to the cause of death but will not confirm that cause until the conclusion of the autopsy.”
Additional details will be forthcoming as more information becomes available.