Construction work on the Vanier building unearthed human remains

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Construction workers digging in the backyard of a gutted apartment building on Deschamps Avenue in Vanier have found what police believe to be human remains.

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The remains were discovered behind a triplex located at 147 Deschamps Avenue, which had been vacant for more than a year due to renovations. Temporary fences and plywood boards surrounded it.

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A neighbor who has lived next door to the building for more than a decade said she heard construction workers operating a mini digger in the backyard for most of the day until, in the middle of the n the afternoon, the digging stops abruptly.

Police vehicles, including a forensic identification unit, arrived at the scene around 4 p.m., said the neighbor, who asked not to be identified out of fear for her safety. Officers started taking pictures of something in a pit in the backyard. Three police cars remained at the scene Wednesday evening, watching over her.

A police officer declined to provide details of the investigation, but said construction workers noticed a strange smell while digging.

Ottawa police said in a news release Thursday that the investigation is ongoing.

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