Boy Scouts Discover Human Remains While Cleaning Building

Human remains were discovered under a crawl space in a Florida building by members of a local Boy Scouts of America chapter.

In a statement released on Monday, the Pensacola Police Department said that the remains were found underneath a building in the afternoon of Saturday, June 19, by children taking part in a project for the Eagle Scouts.

The property, located at 1601 E. La Rua Street in Pensacola, located in the Florida Panhandle, is a designated historical building owned by the city. It has been used by various civic groups over the years, including the Boy Scouts, the authorities told ABC-affiliate WEAR-TV.

Footage filmed by the station over the weekend showed several police vehicles outside of the building, while investigators appeared to be examining evidence underneath a tent in front of the property.

The police said that the remains that were found during the cleanup were later confirmed by the Medical Examiner's Office to be human bones.

Andy Waltrip, assistant scout master of Boy Scout Troop 3 in Pensacola, told WEAR-TV that the children found the human remains in a crawl space underneath the building that they were tasked with cleaning and refurbishing on Saturday.

"Along with passing trash and extra lumber and things like that out from underneath the building through the little hole, they passed out a couple of bones," Waltrip said. "Very dry, didn't have any smell to them, looked like they'd been there a long time."

Waltrip said that the juveniles were not "freaked out" by their discovery as "they actually thought it was chicken bones or little animal parts too."

He said that the scout master only became concerned and called the authorities when "it looked like possibly part of a skull came out," saying that they then said: "'Time out, hold up.'"

Waltrip, who said that he hopes the discovery is "nothing nefarious," told WEAR-TV that the children who found the bones were then questioned by forensics about the bones, but confirmed that they were not scared and instead found the process interesting.

"It could have been a bad story, a horror story, for some. In our instance, luckily with young boys—with the circumstances—they thought it was pretty interesting and pretty neat and one of them even thought maybe we could do archaeology merit badge next."

The Pensacola police said that the University of West Florida Department of Anthropology is aiding them with the investigation.

Newsweek has contacted the Pensacola Police Department and the local Boy Scouts chapter for comment.

Boy Scouts find human remains
Sign with logo for Boy Scouts of America in the Silicon Valley, Foster City, California, April 11, 2020. Human remains were discovered under a crawl space in a building in Florida on Saturday while members of the local Boy Scouts were conducting a cleanup as part of a project. Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images