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SALT LAKE CITY — The body of a young man found in a field in a vacant lot in Sugar House Wednesday morning has been identified as 16-year-old Kenyatta Winston.
Police were called about 7:30 a.m. to 1120 E. Crandall Ave. (2900 South) where the body of Winston was found.
Police said Wednesday afternoon that the boy was shot, but did not confirm it as a definitive cause of death. They are treating it as suspicious. Family members told police they had not seen Winston since Sunday.
Police are looking for anyone who has information on Winston or his death, or why he would be in Sugar House. Thay said he had no known friends or family in the area and lives in Glendale.
Police closed off the vacant lot early Wednesday. The body had begun to decompose and a smell was noticeable from the street nearby. Police said it is hard to determine exactly how long a person has been dead and a number of factors play into remains deteriorating, including heat and humidity.
"That's something the medical examiner's office and our detectives will be able to determine later," said Det. John Ashdown. "That's something based of of a couple things on scene and evidentiary stuff. So it's something that's not really easy to determine initially when you first come on scene."
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Police were also looking into missing person reports, but there was nothing obvious reported in the area.
Neighbors were baffled by the death. Some said that people regularly walk through the area, and how the body could have gone undiscovered for any length of time is a mystery.
One resident told KSL that his dog usually barks if it hears anything. Others had a hard time believing something sinister could happen in the neighborhood.
"Definitely a rare occurrence here," said Shannon Schmidt. "We don't find dead bodies very often, so it's definitely surprising for our area."