Someone walking a dog discovered a woman's body Saturday morning along a dirt road in a remote, scenic area of Charleston County near a Rantowles Creek boat landing, officials said.

The death of Helen Hancock, 40, of Hanahan has been ruled a homicide, said Bobbi Jo O'Neal, Charleston County deputy coroner.

The cause of death is not being released because of the ongoing investigation, she said.

The possibility that the woman was sexually assaulted has not been ruled out, O'Neal said.

The Charleston County Sheriff's Office was notified about 9:16 a.m. When deputies arrived, they discovered Hancock's body in some bushes just off Bulow Landing Road.

O'Neal said the woman had been there less than 24 hours.

The half-mile-long dirt road where Hancock's body was discovered is near the Dorchester County line, two miles from U.S. 17 off Davidson Road.

A fisherman at the boat landing said fellow anglers told him that deputies shut down the road Saturday morning and that the body was found next to a subdivision that is under development.

Chris Christmas and his father Thomas Christmas, who were fishing, at the landing, said Bulow Landing Road is no place to be alone because it is so remote.

"It's easier for people to do wrong things around here because there's nobody around. If I do come down here by myself, I carry a pistol," Chris Christmas said.

Hancock was wearing blue jeans and a dark-colored T-shirt but no shoes, according to the Sheriff's Office. She was unemployed, O'Neil said.

The Sheriff's Office released a brief statement about the discovery of the body. Calls seeking further comment from a sheriff's spokesman were not returned. An incident report was not available.