NEW ORLEANS -- A morbid discovery Wednesday by New Orleans police could be the answer to a missing-person case in Mississippi.

Hancock County Chief Investigator Glenn Grannan said his agency is in contact with the New Orleans Police Department in connection with a decomposing body found wrapped in carpet off Interstate 10 in New Orleans East.

Grannan said while there has been no confirmation, investigators believe the man could be 54-year-old Philip Whitaker. Whitaker was last seen in Harrison County Nov. 8, when he reportedly left home to go to the pharmacy.

Grannan said there is a strong belief the body could be Whitaker's based on superficial details, such as tattoos. However, he added decomposition is making that hard to determine.

According to a preliminary report, New Orleans police said a driver called them around 3:45 p.m. Wednesday and reported a rolled up piece of carpet near the Michoud Boulevard onramp with flies and a foul odor. Police said when they arrived, they found the decomposed body of an unidentified man.

Police have not released any other details. The Orleans Parish Coroner's Office will identify the man once an autopsy is completed, officials said.

Anyone with information about this death is asked to call Crimestoppers at (504) 822-1111.