A woman’s body was found hanging from a tree and on fire at Griffith Park, a popular destination in Los Angeles. According to the Los Angeles Fire Department and the Los Angeles Police Department, the body was discovered at around 12:38 p.m. The body was still on fire when first responders arrived on scene, and the Los Angeles Fire Department had to extinguish the flames upon arrival. The body was found near the Griffith Park Merry-Go-Round.
The age and race of the person deceased has not yet been released. Officials say that the woman’s body is severely burned. Witnesses and bystanders claim that the deceased woman was a regular visitor to Griffith Park, and that she was known to regularly sit by the tree that she was found hanging from. Body recovery operations were conducted by the Los Angeles Fire Department. Firefighters spent hours carefully removing the burned body from the tree. By 4:10 P.M., the woman’s body had been lowered and removed from the tree in Griffith Park.
The initial determination from the Los Angeles Police Department alleges suicide and self-immolation. I reached out to the department for clarification on what this initial determination is based on. The department referred me to the Los Angeles County Department of Medical Examiner-Coroner, who have not yet responded to inquiries about the initial determination. We also still do not know which came first: the hanging or the burning. Notably, the police informed local news outlets of their initial determination of suicide and self-immolation well before the woman’s body was even removed from the tree. As of right now, the investigation into this horrifying and shocking tragedy is still ongoing.
The Los Angeles County Medical Examiner-Coroner released the name of the woman found dead in Griffith Park. Vanessa Garcia was 36 years old.
Ethnicity: Hispanic/Latin American.
Cause of death: Asphyxia, hanging.
Manner listed: Suicide.
Also listed: thermal burns.