Riverside County Sheriff's deputies responded to a call about a body being found near Jameson Drive. Photo by Jenny Kirchner

Tuesday evening, a partially decomposed body was found near Highway 243 and Jameson Drive, in Idyllwild.


Darryl Crocker and Ken Lee, both of Pine Cove, had found the body and reported the discovery to Riverside County Sheriff’s Department. Deputies and investigators from the Hemet Station responded to the scene about 7:30 p.m.

Lee’s vehicle had stalled and while waiting for a tow service to arrive. The clothed remains were found in a wooded area approximately fifty yards from the roadway next to a small transient-type encampment, according to the Sheriff’s Department.

Investigators from the Hemet Station and the Coroner's Office were unable to positively identify the sex of the individual while at the scene. Investigators are examining items found in the encampment that may assist with identifying the subject.

No signs of foul play were evident at the scene.

This investigation is ongoing and the RIverside County Sheriff's Department is asking anyone with information about this incident to call Investigator Robertson at (951) 791-3400.


  1. Perhaps, if the Sheriff's Department may care to share what they had found at the "small transient-type encampment"–Maybe with a little bit of luck, somoene in town, just may know who the unfortunate soul may be.

  2. I have mixed thoughts:
    a) what is it with the mountain towns that attract bizarre deaths? that skull at Lake Fulmor, the German tourist couple shooting at the Vista point in the 80s. The random unclaimed bones that show up every year.

    b) when a homeless person dies, it makes sense that it would not be in a hospital or a residence.

    c) glad that it wasn't foul play.

    d) "Stealth camping" is the backpacking term when referring to outdoor adventurists. But when combined with poverty, drug use, mental illness, no trek destination, then it's sad hobo living.

    e) this negatively affects tourism, and real estate values. I was thinking of buying a cabin near there, my wife will automatically veto because of news events like this.

    f) how many more homeless people are hiding out in the shadows of unoccupied vacation homes, coming out at night to drink, bathroom use and wash up in your backyard.

    g) enforcement means more police monitoring, more taxes. No one wants that.

    h) the homeless persons could have chosen a county shelter or church for assistance, but chose to be solo on the margins of the city, then left the pile burden clean up on a couple of guys with a stalled car and the police, ambulance public service.

    i) had I been those two guys, I'd have bad dreams for a while, and I lived through 15 years of foreign wars. That would kill my mountain zen. very disturbing.

    • In response to your item (h), how heartless can you be to imply that that poor person selfishly "chose" to be there, and thoughtlessly left his or her "pile burden." You are a self-righteous idiot, and I am glad that your wife will veto the move here. We don't need your brand of "tourism" and if someone's sad, lonesome death affects real estate values here, well try the weird crimes in the big cities.

      • We pay plenty of taxes for social services and psychological medical services welfare and non profit orgs such as churches and soup kitchens get tax deductions to aid the homeless.

        When someone rejects all the freebies to break the law, then expire in a non dignified way, OF COURSE it their fault.

        Take personal responsibility. Get help. Not die in the bushes.

        You know animals, birds and insects did their thing. That is not a way to go for dignified people.

      • Beth,
        Your sympathy is misplaced. It is wreckless for homeless and physically ill people to hide in the forest, setup camp and eventually die there. This is not a fairy tale world, or a magical forest where people can live in a cabin deep in the woods. Illegal permanent camp sites spread disease e.coli in the water supply.
        What if it was a lost child that discovered the dead decomposing body?

        In third world countries, dead bodies spread other diseases, especially with rodents, insects and scavenger hawks and coyotes. Those animals technically would have to be destroyed, because they fed on human flesh. Gross I know.

        If you really care about your environment, then you should also consider the welfare of children, the sanitation of the town water supply, the well being of the pretty birds we see, and the animals in nature.

        That is why there is a ritual for burials, and a cemetary. To control the spread of disease.

        Beth, you mean well, but you are simple. The real world is complex.

        Next time you see a homeless person, either invite them in your home PERMANENTLY, direct them to many of the social services that help with med, psy, food, shelter, or be equally responsible for the trash, pollution and disease they leave behind for others to ingest or clean up.

        Don't be holier than thou Beth, by simplifying the homeless problem or absolving it of its consequences.

        • As a matter of fact, I have had a homeless person in my home while she got things worked out (an older woman, in San Diego, whose house apartment burned down and she lived month to month on social security). I also took in a 17-year-old young man whose parents were on drugs and kicked him out. This was all while I was a single mom, working, and attending college classes to update my math skills so I could help my college-bound kid with her homework. HAVE YOU DONE ANY OF THIS??? AND I PAY TAXES… The reality is that there are lots and lots of people out there who are off the grid for various reasons AND there are NO homeless shelters in Idyllwild. NO churches here put people up. So, call me holier than thou if you want to, but don't accuse me of being "simple." I do know the issue is complex. I have been on the front=line of it, and I am clear. Anyone who thinks that these people "choose" this is not.

  3. I agree with Jack and Agnes.

    Beth: sympathy means doing something about a problem. We have laws and a system for the homeless situation.

    Your attitude Beth and others like you will turn our town into Venice Beach and Santa Monica, full of junkies, homeless and 3am criminals, that come out at night when you leave your windows open at night.

    Shame on you Beth.

    • shame on me for what? I am not advocating drug use, homelessness and criminals. I am just stating a fact that there are many people who are homeless, and many of them are not druggies or criminals. Are you saying shame on me because I state the truth? Are you saying shame on me because I've housed homeless people? Because I've fed them? Because I worked on skid row doing outreach, referring people to social services, recovery programs? Because I've helped battered women and children? What EXACTLY am I supposed to be ashamed of. Who the hell are you, Jack Foot? You have made me mad with your personal attack. And, by the way, again, I have worked and paid taxes since I was a teenager, raised a child who is a college grad and happily married, working herself, etc. What is your beef with me?

  4. Beth – The problem most of us have with you is that you do not hold the homeless responsible for their own actions. You sanction their illegal camp behavior. That is unacceptable.

    Homeless or with residence, individual responsibility must remain a top priority.
    You defend a homeless person that broke the law, did not seek publicly provided county services for food and shelter. Instead put herself at risk, resulting in an abandoned death, decay and decomposition.

    Homeless people have a choice to proactively seek the free county services. The county shelter is not a Hilton, but they will call you an ambulance, instead of allowing the corpse to rot all summer in someone's backyard or the national forest.

    Personal responsibility.
    It's for everyone.
    even the homeless.

  5. Sorry but that body was at one time someone’s child, maybe mother or father, someones pride and joy. You should not judge why or how they got to the point in their life to be homeless. Nor should you feel free to call them a druggie, thief or criminal. Bad mouthing the dead is a sign of heartlessness and you should be ashamed for doing so. Enjoy your warm home because many will be cold tonight. Fill your stomach but remember many will go hungery. It’s ashame that nothing you can do will fill a cold heart.

    Beth you make some great points and the attracts on your post show that some can not put themselves in someone else’s shoes.

  6. personal responsibility encompasses the ability to empathize as well.

    I did not see Beth promote illegal camping, she just asked some of you to see that the homeless are not always criminals, drug abusers or the like… no worries, I know reading comprehension has tanked in this great country.

    Oh, it was funny to see the bit about dignified death when most seemingly lack the skills for a dignified life. Oops, my bad… give this keyboard commando thing a chance and our culture might embrace personal attacks as being dignified one day too!!! YAY!

    • LAME….Just how LAME are you? Beth does not have the ability to delete comments. Any and all deletions are due to the sole discretion belonging to the Editor of the Town Crier–Everyone KNOWS that! Well, almost everyone but LAME.

  7. Beth, and JP, deleting posts, reveals your true colors. Commie Red, not Red White & Blue.

    I'll re-post the definition of Personal Responsibility:
    "There is only one person responsible for your life and the vocation you have chosen. That person is the one you see in the mirror in the morning when you wake up. Don’t blame God, the government, your boss, your parents, your former teachers, your coach, your co-workers or your dog.

    • Your logic is flawed. Of course people can choose. The hospitals are full. The cemetaries are full. The homeless shelters are full. Those are results of the actions of RESPONSIBLE PEOPLE.

      Hiding in the bushes where no one can find you is the CHOICE and action of a wreckless irresponsible person.

      News flash: homeless people make bad choices in life.

  8. To Geez Louise……Are you kidding me? Without even knowing the circumstances you can come to the significant conclusion that this person wasn’t struck by a vehicle? Or possibly the victim of some other tragic event? Your response is deplorable and resoundingly pathetic.

  9. One more for Geez Louise…. Your lack of respect for human life is extremely alarming. Doesn’t matter if this person was homeless, rich, or bankrupt.Doesn’t matter if this unfortunate individual was found in some bushes or up a tree, a human being has lost their life. Have a little common courtesy.

  10. I find it very interesting, that most everyone commenting on here, is assuming that the deceased, was homeless due to the discovery, of a small transient-type encampment in a wooded area approximately fifty yards from the roadway. Who are you people even to say for certain, that the unfortunate soul, was actually homeless? A possible“BLIGHT” on society–“RUDE” enough to pick the side of the road to die. So what if, as it may be very likely, the person, who has now gone onto a much better place, was in fact, a "PILLAR" of Idyllwild's social standings, who may have owned a home up here and yet, chose to be a bit reclusive and prefered to shy away from people. Then, while on his/her traditional walks into and through town from (and I’m assuming), Pine Cove, was suddenly stricken by an aneurism, suffered a heat-stroke or a heart attack and collapsed along side of the road, unable to call out for help.

  11. –All the while, a few heartless people, who feel they are well above their fellow man (like some who have self-righteously commented on here), may have allegedly, simply ignored the “LUMP” lying on the side of the road as if it was just a piece of garbage. Either because, they didn’t want to get involved or just figured, someone else would come along and deal with the discovery. Homeless or not. That person. May it be male or female, was a human being, who may or may not have struggled much in his or her lifetime, deserves much better compassion and respect than what he/she is getting on here. All because of where the partially decomposed body had been discovered.

  12. You guys are probably the same people that let your dogs off leash on a leash required trail.

    Your dogs poop and leave it for others to step in and others to clean up your mess.

    A bunch of wreckless hippies lacking personal responsibility.

    • wish I could blame the hippies for all the poo out there, personal responsibility seems to get the brown trout no matter the life philosophy these days

      but I am sure we could all stand to model ourselves by your path
      ^almost as original as "we are all a special snowflake"

  13. To Geez Loiuse, doesn’t matter where the body was found, what they did in life. What is it gong to take for you to understand that person was someones family member, that human being could’ve been a mother or a father, a brother or a sister, a son or a daughter. God forbid anything tragic happens in your life, but if it does and you need help, I hope that someone ends up being just like you.

  14. I often wonder, how someone so selfish…superficial and so full of hate towards another human being as is apparent, in Geez Louise's many comments, can actually look at themselves in the mirror each day. Oh how I also pity you, Geez Louise–as well as, feel sorry for any family member and what friends you may have, who are willing to put up with someone as the likes of you. Let's hope, you may never experience death completely alone. And when the day does comes that the Banshie, wails forth her mournful warning, there may be someone at your side with comforting words. But somehow….I doubt that very much.

  15. ITC, please follow up:

    So… any update on this case from the Sheriff or Coroner's office?
    no wallet, no ID, no fingerprint? No next of kin? No one matching was reported missing?

    How about that permanent encampment on National Forest property, was it removed to allow the native wild plants and habitat area to naturally restore?

    How about that dog in the photo? I would like to know if its a police dog, local dog, stray or coyote?