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LAKELAND, Florida - A homicide investigation is underway in northwest Lakeland Tuesday after a man searching for scrap metal reported finding human remains hidden in a wooded area shortly before 9 a.m.

The remains, which included a human skull, were in a container discovered near the intersection of North Wabash Avenue and Crutchfield Road.

PHOTOS:Human bones discovered in Lakeland

Investigators say they're not sure how the unidentified person died, and until they can determine what happened, say they are treating the case as a murder.

"We investigate all deaths as if they are homicides," said Polk Sheriff Grady Judd. "We're treating this investigation as seriously as it can possibly be done."

Investigators say the remains appear to be those of an adult. The skeletal remains will next be transported to the Medical Examiner's Office who will attempt to make a positive identification and determine how the person died.