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Neighbor smelled smoke from Hemet home where human remains were discovered [Updated]

November 25, 2009 |  1:08 pm

Neighbors on Bluejay Way, a quiet housing tract near Harmony Elementary School in Hemet, expressed shock today as news filtered in about the charred remains found at a house on the street.

Robert Rotsolk said he smelled what seemed like a bonfire coming from his neighbor's backyard two Sundays ago about 6:30 p.m. and reported it to the police.

"It smelled like pallets burning on the beach," he said.

Hemet police came on Tuesday and found the first set of remains in the backyard. They are investigating whether the remains belong to any of three 17-year-olds who disappeared without a trace a week ago. Two of the teens were seen at the home earlier.

One of the teens, Jose Campos, lived at the single-story gray house. The two others, Felicia Sharpe and Adrian Rios, also are from Hemet. Police said the remains are not those of Sharpe. [Updated at 2:08 p.m.: A previous version of this post misspelled Sharpe's name as Sharp.]

[Updated at 2:16 p.m.: Police said at a news conference today that Sharpe has been located and she is being questioned by investigators, and that they have found additional human bones in the shallow grave in the backyard.]

Alex Franco and his two sons watched investigators sift through the garage of the home. Boxes were stacked on the pavement as forensics teams combed the place for more evidence.

"I have seen police and undercover officers going in there for the last few days," Franco said. "It's very strange. I can't believe this has happened in this neighborhood. "

Laura Carmona, 17, has known Rios since sixth grade. She said she meets with his family every night at 7 to pray the rosary in the hopes that the charred body parts aren't his.

"He was a typical teenager who sometimes got into trouble," she said. "He was best friends with my cousin and was always at my house. I hope for his mom's sake it's not him, but we have been hearing rumors that it is him."

Police are expected to release more information at a 2 p.m. news conference.

-- David Kelly in Hemet

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