As many as 20 bodies have been recovered from a house in Hardin, Texas, which is suspected to a have a mass grave, according to CNN. Federal officials confirmed the unearthing of bodies, including those of children, even as various theories are doing the rounds regarding the mass grave in Hardin, 50 miles from Houston.
The CNN reported in its 'This Is Just In' section that federal officials are securing the scene of the mass grave. Meanwhile, the owner of the property expressed surprise and shocked by the news. A tipster alerted the police on Tuesday about a mass grave where 25 to 30 bodies were buried.
However no other news media has so far confirmed the unearthing of dead bodies. We're taking this very, very seriously. I do hope and pray this is a false alarm, Liberty County Judge Craig McNair told reporters outside the house, Reuters reported.
Liberty County sheriff's deputies are currently on the scene, according to reports. KHOU-TV, an affiliate of CBS said a police source has confirmed the existence of the mass grave.
There is mystery and intrigue surrounding the revelation as events unfolded and details trickled in. It has emerged that the owners of the property are long-haul truck drivers and that blood stains were found in the farmhouse. The property owner Joe Bankston, who was contacted by KHOU, said his daughter and her fiancé had lived there.
He said the blood stains found inside the house and around it belonged to the fiancé of his daughter, who had attempted to commit suicide at the house. He said he cleaned the blood stains himself, but was not sure he got it all.
Another intriguing revelation made by Bankston is that he has got a son who is a sex convicted sex offender. However Bankston maintained that his son was away from this place for at least a year.
A neighbour said she was friends with the teenage daughter of Bankston who lived in the farmhouse and that the teenager and her fiancé had moved out of the house a while ago.
According to reports the dead bodies could include those of children as well. The CNN report says of the 20 dead bodies found so far, some belonged to children.
People, especially Hardin residents are perplexed about the unfolding situation. The entire community is reeling in shock right now. No one knows anything yet. We're all hoping and praying whoever did this, whatever it is, is caught and punished. There's so much misinformation out there right now, a reader wrote in the comments section of the CNN site which said at least 20 bodies have been found.
Others refuse to buy the theory that a mass grave does exist. They point to a Houston Chronicle story which says officials had found nothing at a house they searched following the tip of a psychic. some believe the entire thing is a hoax triggered by a psychic.
How dumb are your cops there in Hardin it's a HOAX reported to cops from a nut, another reader commented.
Meanwhile, Bankston, the owner of the property, said he didn’t kill anyone. I haven't killed anybody ... And I have a lot of friends, but I haven't helped anybody bury any bodies, Houston Chronicle quoted him as saying.