Man's beaten and burned body found inside vacant Detroit house

Man's beaten and burned body found inside vacant Detroit house

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Calvin Austin Calvin Austin
DETROIT (WJBK) -

A broken off piece of crime scene tape is the only hint of trouble outside a boarded up house on the 5000 block of Ivanhoe on Detroit's west side.  Police and firefighters found the body of 53-year-old Calvin Austin burned beyond recognition in the doorway after responding to reports of a fire on February 5.

"They beat him up and set him on fire," a woman told me.

She said she has known Austin for years and that he just celebrated his birthday in January.  He leaves behind a 20-year-old son.

"They stripped him out of his clothes, took everything he had and it's a shame," the woman said.

Family and friends want to know who would do this.  They say Austin was burned over his entire body.  They also want to see abandoned houses like the one where the body was found torn down.

Mayor Dave Bing just unveiled a new plan to more quickly and aggressively demolish vacant homes under a Detroit blight authority.

"They shouldn't be having these houses still up here.  They should condemn them all.  All the abandoned ones, condemn them," the woman said.

Right now police do not have much to go on.  They believe Austin was assaulted in another location before he ended up at that vacant house.

If you have any information to help solve this disturbing case call Detroit police.

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