Bodies of 3 adults found in Columbia, S.C., drainage pipe; Police say all were slain

Thursday, November 2nd 2006, 8:43 am
By: News On 6

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) _ Police found the bodies of three adults inside a drainage pipe near a public housing complex early Thursday and said all appear to have been killed during the night.

It wasn't clear where they died or how, Columbia Police Chief Dean Crisp said. The age and gender of the victims and further details were not released.

Richland County Coroner Gary Watts said authorities initially had difficulty reaching the bodies. By midmorning, the bodies had been removed from the pipe, which is larger than 3 feet in diameter, and were being taken to the coroner's office for identification, Crisp said.

``When you find a crime like this, it's clearly out of the ordinary,'' Crisp said.

Authorities had no suspects, he said.

A resident of the apartment complex reported seeing the bodies around 5 a.m., police Sgt. Florence McCants said. Police also received a call about gunshots in the area, but Crisp was unsure if it was related.

Dozens of complex residents gathered in small groups outside the crime scene tape. Authorities put tarps on a fence to shield the area from onlookers.

At the complex of one-story apartments, resident Tanyetta Brown said there had been recent crimes in the area.

``It's not that the neighborhood is dangerous, it's the company that you keep,'' Brown said.