Lawrence County authorities have identified the body of a man found Tuesday near East Lawrence High School.
The Lawrence County Sheriff's Office said a group of teenagers found the body of Matthew Caleb Farrer, 23, of Trinity, in a wooded area off an access road behind a school baseball field around 8 p.m. Tuesday.
Farrer was reported missing in February, according to the Lawrence County Sheriff's Office. Investigators said they believe his body was in the wooded area for at least a month.
The cause of death has not been released. Lawrence County Sheriff Gene Mitchell said investigators will have to wait for forensic evidence to determine what led to his death because of how much the body had decomposed. The county coroner was able to identify Farrer by his tattoos, Mitchell said.
People who live in the community said Farrer's disappearance has been on everyone's minds.
"We play baseball near there," said Caddo resident Tommy Lentz. "It's not far from where I live. I live just north of here and it's shocking, unusually shocking."
"It's surprising, surprising," said Tiffany Blackerby, who lives near East Lawrence High School. "We've never really had anything like that happen in this area."
The case is being treated as a death investigation, Mitchell said. Anyone who saw Farrer around the time of his disappearance or who has information about how Farrer's body ended up in the area is asked to contact the Lawrence County Sheriff's Office.