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Body found in trunk of car sold at Lynnwood auction

Investigators don't know who the man is or how he died.

LAKE STEVENS, Wash. — Workers at Braven Metals process about 10,000 vehicles every year.

Scrapyard workers routinely go through the abandoned cars they buy at auction before recycling the metal.

They come across all kinds of stuff, but this was a first.

"I haven't come across something like that before," said Braven HR Director Michael Smith. "I didn't know what to think when my name was called on the radio and I got called to take a look and see what was going on."

Workers discovered the body of a man last Thursday after buying a 2002 Ford Explorer at an auction in Lynnwood.

"To me it looked like he may have been staying in his vehicle," Smith said. "There was a sleeping bag."

The SUV was supposed to have been inspected by a third party prior to its arrival, but somehow it slipped through the cracks.

Witnesses said it's unclear how long the man had been in the SUV or how he died.

"Just when you think there's nothing else that's gonna shock you something like this happens," Smith said. "We really have seen it all at this point."

The discovery was made just before the car was to be crushed and sold for scrap.

Smith said he is grateful his crew was on top of things.

"We're happy that our process worked and we were able to get him into the hands of someone who can identify him and hopefully find a loved one or family because everybody is somebody's someone."

Lake Stevens police are still trying to identify the man and determine how he died but at this point they say it does not appear to be a homicide.

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