MARTIN COUNTY, Fla. — As then-Hurricane Nicole battered Florida's east coast, the storm unearthed a fascinating discovery — human remains believed to be part of an ancient Native American burial ground, according to multiple reports.
The discovery of skeletal remains of about six individuals was made Thursday on Chastain Beach. According to the Martin County Sheriff's Office, the remains were unearthed due to strong winds from Nicole, CBS12 reported.
“The bones will be turned over to historians from some of the local universities are here,” Deputy Jon Budensiek told WKMG. “They will make sure they are properly respected and preserved for history.”
Budensiek added the unearthed remains would normally be about 8 feet under the beach floor, adding to the theory investigators have the remains are part of the burial ground.
According to WPBF, ancient human remains were also uncovered in the area after Hurricane Dorian in 2019 and Hurricane Sandy in 2012.
WPBF reports investigators said a beachgoer found six human skulls and several small bones Thursday morning in the rocks along the beach.
The area the remains were found on is federally protected land because of the ancient Native American burial ground. It is illegal for people to go digging for ancient artifacts or human remains because of this.
Representatives of the Seminole Tribe of Florida reportedly told WPBF they were "disappointed their ancestors had been disturbed and asked the remains be treated with the utmost respect."