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Body found in tent near U.S. Highway 278 in Covington

COVINGTON -- Covington Police officers made the grisly discovery of a body in a wooded area behind Checkers restaurant on U.S. Highway 278 Wednesday morning.

Eric Shayne McDowell, 60, was found dead inside a blue tent on the property.

According to a CPD incident report, police were alerted by an anonymous caller that "a foul odor was coming from the tent."

"We believe he had been dead at least two days," said Public Information Officer Capt. Ken Malcom. "We have made contact with his daughter in Kentucky and informed her. We don't believe any foul play was involved in his death."

According to the incident report, McDowell had identification papers indicating that he lived in Hixson, Tenn., as well as Covington.

"McDowell also had personal belongings in the tent indicating that he may have been temporarily living in it," the report states. "The identifications found on McDowell were a Tennessee ID card and a Georgia Department of Corrections card."

The incident report also states that officers found a pet bowl and cat food near the tent and observed two cats roaming near the tent, as well as dry food and a bottled drink.

McDowell's body has been sent to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation Crime Lab for autopsy. Results are pending as to cause of death.