Hiker found dead in Florida may have Brooklyn ties

New clues have led police to believe a hiker in Florida found dead over the summer could be linked to Brooklyn.

News 12 Staff

Mar 5, 2019, 6:16 PM

Updated 1,866 days ago

Share:

Hiker found dead in Florida may have Brooklyn ties
New clues have led police to believe a hiker in Florida found dead over the summer could be linked to Brooklyn.
The Collier County Sheriff's Office put together a sketch of a man they found dead in the Everglades in July.

Within a week, they received numerous responses from Facebook users. 

"They thought it was a man that they saw hiking a few months prior. They had taken photos of him and once we had actual photos of the guy that we thought it was, we started sharing those photos,” says Kristine Gill, an office media specialist at Collier County Sheriff’s Office.

She says in the hiking community, “trail names” are very common. Hikers say the unknown man went by "denim” or "mostly harmless."

"He originally went by a trail name "denim" because he was wearing jeans on the trail, he was not very experienced when he first started hiking,” says Gill.

Investigators traced his route all the way from Georgia down into the Everglades where his body was found. However, it's believed he started the Appalachian trail in New York.

"I think Brooklyn has come up a lot, at least a couple hikers who encountered him thought that,” says Gill.

Authorities believe he may have died from malnutrition since he weighed only 83 pounds when he was found. All his belongings were intact when he was found, including $3,000 in cash. No ID was found with the body.

After months of working the case, the Sheriff's Office tried a new approach for the first time --- a podcast. 

"This is a story that if the right person listens to it and if the right person shares it, we can actually solve a case,” says Gill.

Detectives are hoping someone might recognize the man, so his family can be notified, and he can be properly buried.
Anyone with information is urged to contact that Collier County Sheriff's Office.


More from News 12