Body found at Merced homeless encampment after a fire early this morning

The California Highway Patrol is investigating after a body was found at a homeless encampment early this morning just before 7:00 a.m.

CHP and Merced Fire Department responded to a fire on Southbound 99 just before the 16th Street overpass at around 6:54 a.m., and located a body after the fire was extinguished.

CHP Investigators along with CalFire personnel are conducting the investigation and talking to witnesses to determine if the fire was intentionally started.

It is an active scene, and CHP is requesting that witnesses to this incident contact the Merced area office at 209-356-6600 or 209-356-2900

The identity of the individual remains unknown.

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