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Body found in recycling plant identified as homeless Newport News man

Josh White

The body found in a Manassas-area recycling center after apparently being transported there in a Newport News recycling container has been identified as that of James Edward Sessoms, 60, Newport News police said Friday morning.

Police said Sessoms was homeless and known to frequent the area of Municipal Lane in Newport News, where they believe the recycling container originated. Authorities believe it’s possible that Sessoms was sleeping in the container when it was picked up for transport to Manassas.

Detectives are still awaiting information for the medical examiner regarding the cause of death.

Canusa Hershman Recycling Company, which owns the Manassas recycling center, said they have a customer in the Newport News area and that employees found Sessom’s body inside their facility late Wednesday night. The Washington Post is part of a recycling joint venture with Canusa Hershman’s parent company but does not have a connection to the Manassas facility.

Though rare, homeless people have been known to fall victim when recycling containers in which they are sleeping are picked up and their contents compacted. Such a death occurred in November when a man was found in a Laurel recycling facility after falling asleep among cardboard destined for the plant.

-- Josh White

By Josh White  |  May 21, 2010; 10:10 AM ET
Categories:  Josh White , Updates , Virginia  
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