SANIBEL, Fla. – A man working to relocate gopher tortoises stumbled upon a human skull instead.
A developer plans to build on a lot on Wulfert Road and needed to relocate the highly protected gopher tortoises before disrupting the property.
That’s when one of the guys hired for the job found a human skull.
“I thought when I saw the cars, the developer was doing some work down there,” said a neighbor, Art Cassell.
He said he saw the police activity on Thursday. When he found out it was an investigation about a human skull, he wasn’t concerned.
“There was a cemetery there that was probably 19th century,” said Cassell, “and there was a grave down at the end of the property where that skull was found.”
We went to the Sanibel Library to talk to a historian.
“You know it sounds like some mystery, murder mystery possibly,” said Betty Anholt, a Sanibel Library associate, “but there are a number of unmarked graves all over the island.”
Anholt says Wulfert Road was home to a number of farmers in the late 1800s. She says the group of less that 100 people had a post office, a school and a store.
“So eventually they needed a graveyard, a cemetery,” she said, “and although it wasn’t dedicated or consecrated as such it was used that way.”
Although the Sanibel Police Department isn’t saying much, they are saying they’re not looking for a person of interest or a missing person.