The state medical examiner will determine the cause of death and identity of a man found dead south of Shawnee Monday morning.
Pottawatomie County Undersheriff Travis Palmer said a passerby reported seeing a body around 7 a.m. along Benson Park Road, just east of Gordon Cooper Drive.
Initially, Palmer said detectives thought this could be a case of hit-and-run, but Palmer said the medical examiner does not think the man has any injuries to indicate he was hit by a vehicle. He had likely been deceased about eight or nine hours, Palmer said, and he had no identification.
The Caucasian man, believed to be in his late 20s to early 30s, had some scrapes and scratches that could be indicators of a fall, Palmer said, but deputies also found evidence that the man was staying in the woods about 25 yards from the roadway.
Based on that evidence, Palmer said they believe the man was homeless and was crawling in and out of the thick brush in that area.
Depending on what the medical examiner determines, Palmer said this could be a death involving natural causes or even a medical condition, but the investigation remains open.
Palmer said the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation mapped out the scene and the Oklahoma Highway Patrol also worked the scene Monday.
Deputies on Monday took as many as five calls with inquiries on a possible identity, Palmer said, but they have ruled those out.
Anyone with information is asked to contact the sheriff's office, 405-273-1727.