German police investigate discovery of limbless torso

The discovery of a mutilated woman’s corpse in Füssen has unsettled residents of the idyllic alpine town as local police search for the missing arms, legs and head.

Bavarian police said Tuesday they have no leads in the case or hints about the identity of the woman. The body, wrapped in a plastic bag, was discovered Sunday by a mushroom hunter in a wooded area outside of town. A Munich forensic specialist later identified the body as female.

“The poor woman was probably just dumped here,” said town official Andreas Rist, who couldn’t recall a similar crime in the town, which is famously located near the fairy tale-inspired Neuschwanstein castle.

The police said they have assigned over 50 officers to the search for the woman’s remains and the Criminal Investigation Department has assembled a 20-person task force. The police assume the body was mutilated to make identification difficult.

A 13-year-old boy told police he saw a man acting strangely Saturday evening near the area where the body was found. When the man noticed that he was being watched, he fled into the forest, according to the police.

The wooded area is used as a shortcut for children on their way to school and is also popular with local joggers and dog walkers. “I’m not afraid but I’m upset,” said one woman riding her bike in the area Tuesday. “I often go for a walk there or ride through on my bike.”

The Schwaben-Süd police department in Kempten said it is following up a number of leads already phoned in by residents.