Skip to main content

Police look at homicide victim Tom Bearson's Snapchat activity


It's been six months since the mysterious death of North Dakota State University and Sartell native Tom Bearson.

A warrant filed by investigators provides a glimpse into the investigation of what happened to the 18-year-old college freshman.

Forum News Service reports police want to know more about the messages Bearson was exchanging through Snapchat, a popular smartphone app. Snapchat messages are deleted automatically, shortly after the recipient sees them.

Valley News Live added that authorities with a multiple agency investigation are looking into messages both sent and received from the Snapchat app from Bearson's still-missing iPhone.

According to a warrant filed Thursday in Cass County District Court, Fargo police subpoenaed Snapchat on Oct. 13, seeking the contents of Bearson’s Snapchat account. Snapchat responded the next day, confirming the account for “seetommyb23” was linked to Bearson’s email and phone number and adding they only release information in response to a search warrant.

According to the affidavit for the search warrant, Fargo police responded to Snapchat’s response on Feb. 18, asking for the contents of Bearson’s accounts – including a log of previous communications.

Fargo police Lt. Joel Vettel said police received the information from the search warrant, including usage logs from Bearson’s Snapchat account. He told Valley News Live police found the information they were seeking.

Moorhead police said other social media platforms including Bearson's Facebook, Twitter and email accounts have been turned over to investigators.

Bearson vanished after leaving a party just south of the NDSU campus on Sept. 20. His body was found three days later, five miles away in the lot of an RV dealer in an industrial area of south of Moorhead.

Police have said Bearson died of homicidal violence, but haven’t specified how. They’ve also said they don’t have a suspect or motive identified. Authorities are still looking for Bearson's silver-colored iPhone 5, and one white Nike Air Jordan left tennis shoe, size 9 1/2.

Next Up

West St Paul, Minnesota - August 2018

Female shot in parking lot of Twin Cities Menards store

The incident happened at the same Menards where a robbery happened in September.

Image from iOS

1 injured, 1 in custody following shooting, police chase in Hopkins

The suspect was arrested following a police pursuit Sunday afternoon.

Kirk Cousins

Kirk Cousins surprises Viking fan van on Minnesota highway

Cousins's new aggressiveness has pulled into the fast lane.

Joel Eriksson Ek

Another Wild rally falls short against Lightning

The Wild scored two goals with the extra attacker but couldn't beat the two-time defending champs.

police tape, crime scene

2 shootings in Brooklyn Park under investigation

Both incidents remain under investigation.

Justin Jefferson

Justin Jefferson erupts to lead Vikings over Packers

Greg Joseph's game-winner helped the Vikings get back to .500.

Duluth fire department, fire engine, fire truck

Officials investigating Duluth apartment fire that displaced 10 people

The fire broke out Friday night on the 600 block of East 4th Street.

Car break-in, smashed window, car theft

Orono police alert residents after series of 'smash and grab' robberies

The thieves are targeting cars and stealing valuables left inside.

Adam Thielen

Vikings vs. Packers: 5 things you can count on

Can the Vikings win a pivotal divisional battle?


Man killed in shooting outside apartment building in St. Paul

Shots fired were reported to police around 11:30 p.m.

Anthony Edwards

Ant sets the tone, Timberwolves dominate Grizzlies

The Wolves have won four of their past six games.