MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The Moorhead Police Department says public assistance has helped determine that a vehicle — caught on camera near where a murdered NDSU student’s body was found — is not linked to the killing.

At a press conference on Feb. 9, 2015, police requested help identifying the vehicle. After a response from the community, the vehicle and owner were identified. Now, police say investigators are comfortable that the vehicle is not associated with the ongoing homicide investigation.

The vehicle owner requested not to be identified, but the vehicle in question was a 2005 Nissan Maxima.

“The community wide support is greatly appreciated as investigators continue to follow-up various leads,” police said in a statement. “Through community partnerships we are more efficient with police resources. Investigators on this case confirm there is a lot of follow-up being conducted on this investigation and value the continued community involvement to strive toward identifying the responsible party in this tragic crime.”

On Sept. 23, 2014, Tom Bearson’s body was found outside a recreational vehicle store in Moorhead, three days after he was last seen at a party about six blocks from his dorm in Fargo, North Dakota. The Sartell man’s death was ruled a homicide.

Fargo Police Chief Dave Todd said the case is “difficult” and he “can’t help but get personally involved,” during a Monday press conference convened by the Fargo, North Dakota and Moorhead police departments. Todd said he’s keeping the case on the front burner.

Police said Bearson did not die from an alcohol or drug overdose and was not working as a drug informant. The results of his autopsy will not be released at this time, however, because the information is still sensitive, according to the Moorhead police chief.

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