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Birdwatchers and Police Find Severed Hand and Foot on Brooklyn Shore

By Murray Weiss | February 20, 2015 7:38am
 A severed hand and foot were found in a Gravesend park.
A severed hand and foot were found in a Gravesend park.
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Spencer Platt/Getty Images

GRAVESEND — Three birdwatchers taking pictures along the Brooklyn shoreline spotted a decomposed right hand lying palm up in the sand in Calvert Vaux Park — and police found a foot with a "smooth cut" nearby the next day.

The birdwatchers called 911 and NYPD officers removed the hand, which appeared to be cleanly severed and had apparently been in the water “for a long period of time,” an official said.



The gruesome find was made on Jan. 4.

The following day, a contingent of officers returned along with NYPD dogs. 

They canvassed the Gravesend beach for “additional evidence” and discovered a right foot that was partially hidden beneath driftwood on the water’s edge about 65 feet from where the hand was found, sources said.

According to authorities, the right foot had a “smooth cut” above the ankle bone across the fibula and tibia bones.

The body parts were taken to the Medical Examiner’s Office for further study, but tests involving fingerprints and DNA have yet to turn up any hard leads, sources say.

Investigators believe they are from the same person, but tests have not confirmed that yet.

Investigators also could not say if the victim had been murdered or had died of natural causes before being cut into pieces and discarded, sources said.

Sources also said investigators had yet to tie the body parts to any missing persons report.

Detectives are asking anyone with information to call NYPD Crimestoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS. Police say all calls will be kept confidential.