Body discovered behind Sterling Heights Meijer

A man working outdoors discovered a dead body Wednesday  behind the Meijer in Sterling Heights. 

 Landscaper Josh Lafayette found it while cutting the grass behind the store near 16 Mile and Van Dyke in Sterling Heights at about 10 a.m.

"The first pass around, I smelled something really nasty," he said. "I kind of ignored it and I went back around.

"It was nothing like I've ever smelled.  I knew it wasn't an animal."

Lafayette says he followed the smell down the hill and that's where he discovered the body of a man lying in the grass.

"I didn't believe it," he said. "There was a fire truck (nearby) and I went and told him."

Sterling Heights police say because of the heat, they're not sure how long the man had been there.. Lafayette says the body appeared to be a white man and looked badly decomposed.
"He was wearing work pants with boots on," Lafayette said. "I couldn't tell what kind of shirt. There were maggots all over him."

Police do not suspect foul play but say an autopsy is being conducted and they're working on identifying the man.
"We know there's elderly people around so we were concerned about that," said Stacey Cross,  who works nearby. 

Along with trash and bottles near the body, a pill bottle was also discovered with the name of a homeless man familiar to police who may have been staying in those woods.

"He's still a person," Lafayette said.