The officers called it the saddest investigation they had been a part of.
All Cute All The Time reported that police in Garden Grove, California, found bodies of four members of a family in a white van.
A family of four, including two young children, were found dead in a van on March 15, 2018. The van had been parked at a CVS drug store parking lot for several days.
A passer-by reported at about 8.30 p.m. after walking by and smelling a foul odor coming from it.
Officers were dispatched to investigate the van which had its windows covered with blankets and a sunscreen.
Police Lt. Carl Whitney said that they found a man, a woman, a boy, and a girl dead inside. But the victims did not appear to have any signs of trauma. Autopsies are pending to determine the cause of death.
The source reported that one theory doing the rounds is that the grassy area had obstructed the vehicle’s exhaust and the family suffocated on carbon monoxide.
The man was identified as 41-year-old Phuyouphone Kanyavong, while the woman has not been identified yet and is said to have been 20 years old. The children were a two-year-old girl and an eight-month-old boy.
The family, which was believed to be homeless, was dead for two to three days. The van was parked in the spot for four days.
Police also told media outlets that the officers had no contact with the family prior to finding their bodies.
The woman who made the report informed the police that she had seen the white Honda van go in and out of the parking lot over the past month.
Whitney termed it as an “officer’s worst nightmare” to come across a family who appears to have died together. He said that it was sad for everyone involved.
The van was towed away the following morning by the Orange County Sheriff’s Department crime lab personnel for processing.
Officers have also obtained security video of the vehicle from nearby businesses.