FREEPORT, N.Y. (CBSNewYork/AP) – Detectives on Long Island are investigating a body found in the trunk of a burning car.

Nassau County police say the car was discovered on a street in Freeport at about 10:20 a.m. Friday.

Nassau County Police Lt. Kevin Smith says the body was so badly charred that they don’t know its age, gender, or much else. Its hands and feet were tied together and there was duct tape across the mouth, WCBS 880’s Alex Silverman reported.

“We are conducting a homicide investigation as to the circumstances surrounding this particular event,” said Smith.

About five employees from the nearby Freeport Water Department saw the flames and doused the fire with handheld extinguishers.

WCBS 880’s Alex Silverman Speaks With Lt. Kevin Smith

“It’s a sad thing that this happened to somebody, and you know who is this person? Again, it’s just a sad thing in broad daylight. This is a nice neighborhood, these are all good people over here,” Jimmy Olin, who works at the water department, told 1010 WINS’ Mona Rivera.

When Freeport firefighters arrived, they pried open the trunk of the Nissan, where the fire was concentrated, and discovered the body.

“It turns out from a basically simple car fire to being a crime scene for the police to deal with,” Olin said.

It’s the second body found in a trunk in Nassau County this year. The last one was in April in Oceanside.

As for a connection, Smith said, “It would be much too early to try to make that determination at this point.”

(TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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