D.C. police say men found dead near I-295 likely died of hypothermia in sudden cold snap


Law enforcement officers are seen where two bodies where found at Pennsylvania Avenue and Interstate 295 in Southeast Washington. (Astrid Riecken/For The Washington Post )

Two men who were found dead on Wednesday near an exit close to Interstate 295 and Pennsylvania Avenue likely died because of the sudden cold snap, D.C. police said on Thursday.

There were no signs of trauma on the bodies, which were discovered in a makeshift homeless camp shortly after 9 a.m. The D.C. Medical Examiner has not yet ruled on the cause of death, but a police spokeswoman said it appears to be hypothermia.

Police said one of the men has been identified as a 63-year-old, but his name was not released pending notification of relatives. The second man has not yet been identified, police said.

The bodies were found about 50 feet from each other. While at least three people are believed to have died from hypothermia this winter, deaths linked the cold are unusual this late in the season. From Tuesday night into Wednesday, temperatures dropped to 34 degrees, and the wind chill made it feel even colder.

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Rachel Weiner covers cops and courts in Arlington and Alexandria.
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