Valdosta Murder Investigation

Some residents reported a foul odor coming from a local park. Police have determined it was the body of a missing Valdosta man. The Valdosta Police Department is still waiting for the autopsy result, but for now they are treating the death as a homicide.

Residents in the 800 block of Woodlawn Drive reported a stench coming from the wooded area next to Valloton Park.

"Maybe we need to talk to the city, maybe there's a dead dog, we don't know, all we know we were smelling something terrible," says Bessie Williams, a resident.

Valdosta police officers arrived at the scene, but were unable to pinpoint what caused the odor.

"It's unfortunate we couldn't find it the first time we came over here, but the odor wasn't that distinct at that time," says Lt. Brian Childress.

Wednesday, detectives came to check the odor once again and found the deceased body of 27-year-old Daryl Hamilton of Valdosta, who had been reported missing by his sister since last week.

"It bothered me really bad, just to know it was a dead body and it was right there, you know what I'm saying and so close to my house," says Bessie.

The cause of death has yet been determined, but investigators say they will be working on the case until they get some answers.

"Is it unusual to find a body in a wooded area? Yeah it is, we saw a similar incident happen a couple years ago, but you don't see a lot of this," lt. Childress says.

Park officials did not close the Vallotton Park complex. Although the odor is now gone, the crime tape is still up and folks need to stay away from the crime scene. His brother was not willing to talk on camera, but he is positive that Daryl was murdered, and as far as him being missing since last week, witnesses say they saw him eating at Wendy's on Wednesday and he was at a local dance club Friday night.