Severed hand found in Winnipeg dumpster 0
Police are on the scene of a suspicious incident in downtown Winnipeg Monday afternoon. (James Turner/QMI Agency)
A man known for collecting bottles and cans from garbage bins made a disturbing discovery inside a dumpster in downtown Winnipeg, according to staff at a nearby restaurant.
The man spotted what's believed to be a human hand inside the large bin situated between a high-rise apartment and Dhoom Restaurant and Lounge on Monday morning, and went for help.
"He wanted me to call from our restaurant," said an employee who asked that his name not be published.
The employee said he followed the man — who is known for gathering empties to turn in for cash and is possibly homeless — outside the eatery to look for himself.
"We saw one hand in a plastic bag. I don't know if it was a whole body, but it was fingers and a hand," the man said Tuesday.
Another staff member quickly called police and officers sealed off the area for a massive search shortly after 11 a.m. Monday.
The restaurant was closed for most of the afternoon and staff were asked by police to stay inside the building, the employee said.
Officers combed all of the dumpsters in the immediate area.
On Tuesday, police were tight-lipped about the discovery. A police spokesman confirmed officers found "evidence" to support that the case is a homicide and officers are in the process of positively identifying the deceased.
The Canadian Press reported that two severed hands were found.
"I'm not going to get into specifics at this point," Const. Jason Michalyshen said Tuesday. "The circumstances, I will acknowledge, are very, very unique."
Part of the reason police are being so quiet, Michalyshen suggested, was out of respect for the victim's loved ones, calling it a "highly sensitive matter."
Detectives were optimistic they would know the identity of the victim sometime Tuesday.
Police wouldn't say if the deceased is male or female.