Officers were called to the area of 4th and D streets in Oxnard at 9:39 a.m. The location is blocks away from the Oxnard Police Department.
A man digging for recycling discovered a human skull and jawbone. He also found a discarded Santa Muerte altar. Investigators said the remains were not fresh remains and appeared to be weathered.
Santa Muerte is a saint that detectives say is prayed to for protection, often by drug dealers and gang members. It appears the bones were part of an offering.
"Given the items that were found with the skull and with the jawbone, it appears that it was an offering," said Detective Luis McArthur with the Oxnard Police Department. "But it seems that this is something someone had in their home, and for whatever reason chose to discard it."
The gender and identity of the remains were unknown. It was also unknown how the person died. An investigation into the discovery is ongoing.