A MAN driving through Newcastle with a body on his back seat caught the attention of police for his “erratic” driving this morning.
Police suspect the 52-year-old man from Taree died form a drug overdose and are investigating whether his friend at the wheel knew he was dead, or how long he had been dead for.
The driver of the silver Toyota Camry, who was also 52, was pulled over on Griffiths Rd at Lambton at 3.15am.
“Where they were heading to at 3.15am when they were pulled up, we’re still investigating,” Detective Acting Inspector Scott Wheeler said.
“I would describe it as being erratic driving. The car stood out to police.
“Police saw a man lying down in the back seat of the car and made some investigations and discovered he was deceased.”
He is due to face a number of driving charges in Newcastle Local Court today but has not been charged in relation to the man’s body.
A post mortem will be carried out tomorrow but a drug overdose is a strong line of enquiry for police.
The dead man was known to police and when asked whether a possible drug overdose was a strong line of inquiry, Det Insp Wheeler said: “Yes.”
Police are also investigating where the man died and whether a second crime scene needs to be set up.
Forensics crews searched the car for four hours before removing the man’s body and placing it under a tent.
They continued to search the car and examine the body separately and appeared to be paying specific attention to a dashboard camera in the vehicle.
The car was taken as evidence and the body removed in a van shortly after 9am.