UPDATE: Ron Lane Petersen found deceased

From the Minot Police Department

Update - July 8, 2020 @ 11:00 a.m.:

We regretfully report the body of Ron Petersen was located at around 7 o’clock last night. Petersen’s body was located by volunteers searching in a helicopter in an area near and along the CP railroad tracks west of Sawyer, ND. Deputies from the Ward County Sheriff’s Department, CP Railroad Police and the Minot Police Department responded to the area and located a deceased male in an area north of the CP rail tracks obscured from sight at ground level by tall grass. The area that the body was located is west of the area where the ground search was conducted earlier in the day for the missing person, Ron Petersen out of Minot. The Ward County Sheriff’s Department is conducting the death investigation in this incident and the deceased male has been identified as the missing subject Ron Petersen out of Minot.

UPDATE 7/5/2020

Today, a multijurisdictional search was conducted of the area where missing person, Ron Petersen’s car was found near Sawyer ND. Unfortunately, our search did not turn up new information.

We are now following up on two possible sightings. Two different witnesses in two separate locations have indicated that they saw a man walking on the CP rail tracks. The first sighting was July 5th around 2-3 pm at around 2 ¼ miles west of Velva. The second sighting was on July 5th around 7 pm and was at the 66th Ave. train crossing near Logan. These sightings have not been confirmed to be Petersen but match his general description. We are asking for anyone who may have seen someone matching Petersen’s description on the tracks, to contact the Minot Police Department. Also, if anyone has a video system that captures the area of the tracks, we are asking that they check their video footage to see if it captured anything like these reports.

Please call 701-852-0111 with any information regarding Ron Petersen.


The Minot Police Department is asking for the public’s assistance in locating a missing person from Minot.

Ron Lane Petersen was reported missing from his home in Minot, by family and friends. According to his family, he was not acting normal prior to his disappearance and they are concerned he could be suffering from mental illness.

Petersen’s vehicle was located northwest of Sawyer, parked on a gravel road. The Ward County Sheriff’s Department and Minot Police Department conducted a search of the area but did not find Petersen. The Ward County Sheriff’s Department requested the assistance of the ND Highway Patrol bloodhounds and airplane, but still were unable to locate Petersen.

Petersen is a 54-year-old white male, 6 feet tall, approximately 190 lbs., with long blond hair and blue eyes. We do not have a current clothing description at this time.

If you know the whereabouts of Petersen, saw, or picked up a person matching his description in Sawyer area on around July 1, 2020, please notify the Minot Police Department.

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