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Published November 12, 2012, 02:43 PM

Police Find Stolen NDSU Fleet Vehicle in Red River

Police are looking for information about a truck stolen from North Dakota State University’s fleet that wound up in the Red River on Sunday morning.

FARGO – Police are looking for information about a truck stolen from North Dakota State University’s fleet that wound up in the Red River on Sunday morning.

Fargo fire and police personnel responded at 7:30 a.m. to a report of a vehicle in the river near the 1400 block of Elm Street North. They found a 2007 Dodge Durango with state plates sitting upright in waist-deep water.

The discovery set off a search for possible occupants who may have tried to escape into the cold water. But no one turned up, and police now believe the truck was put there intentionally.

“Somebody probably just put it in gear and let it go down the hill,” said Sgt. Kevin Pallas.

He said the truck was in gear and the keys were in the ignition when police found it.

Elm Street skirts close to the riverbank at that stretch, and often is closed when the water is high.

It’s not clear when the truck went into the river, but it likely happened before the snow fell Sunday morning because the tracks leading to the river were filled in with snow, Pallas said.

He said NDSU didn’t know the vehicle was missing until it turned up in the river. Police are still working to figure out who took it.

“This seems like it was maybe intentionally done,” Pallas said.

Fargo Fire Department Capt. Dane Carley said the discovery was initially treated like a search-and-rescue operation because of the risk of hypothermia.

Divers and dogs were on hand until authorities determined no one was in danger.

“We had to approach it that way,” Carley said.

The truck was later towed from the river.

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