Published: Jul 18, 2014 6:43 AM EDT
Updated: Jul 18, 2014 8:59 AM EDT

SPRING HILL, Fla. (AP) - Two men hired to clean out a vacant Tampa Bay area house thought they found a mannequin hanging in the garage. They cut it down and hauled it to the local dump, where landfill workers realized it was actually a human body.

Hernando County Sheriff's officials on Thursday said the 33-year-old Spring Hill man apparently committed suicide several weeks ago and his body was in a "state of decomposition similar to mummification."

Israel Lopez and Adam Hines told authorities they thought the former renters had left a "Halloween-like" hoax. Lopez hauled the debris to the landfill while Hines continued cleaning.

Landfill workers spotted the remains and called deputies. Lopez was questioned when he brought a second load to the dump. Hines and the property owner were also questioned.

An investigation continues.

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