Rowan authorities say a man whose body was found hanging from a tree in Salisbury last week may have died in early January.
Foul play is not suspected in the death of 25-year-old Bryan Eugene Merrill, according to the Rowan County Sheriff’s Office.
Merrill’s body was discovered last Wednesday in the 12200 block of Stokes Ferry Road by an employee of ABC Professional Tree Service who was mowing in the area. Authorities said the victim was found on the ground with a belt around his neck that was still tied to the branch of a pine tree about six feet above the ground.
Investigators said it appeared the body had been there for some time, and no identification was found on the body. Authorities said they checked open missing person cases as part of their efforts to identify the victim. An autopsy also was performed.
The Rowan Sheriff’s Office said Tuesday that Merrill lived near the crime scene.