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Published March 21 2012

Clay sheriff: Jared Nilles was passenger on Amtrak train

FARGO – Authorities have confirmed that 27-year-old Jared Nilles of Fargo, whose body was found Monday along the railroad tracks between Glyndon and Hawley, Minn., was a passenger on an Amtrak train bound for Chicago, Clay County Sheriff Bill Bergquist said this morning.

The sheriff’s office is waiting for preliminary autopsy results from Ramsey County to determine how Nilles died, he said.

Clay County investigators were en route to the Twin Cities today to meet with Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension agents working on the case, Bergquist said. Authorities also are checking with Amtrak officials to determine whether the train had security cameras, he said.

“I don’t know if we’ll ever know exactly what happened unless somebody saw something,” he said.

BNSF railway contacted the sheriff’s office around 7 a.m. Monday after a train conductor spotted Nilles’ body along the tracks near Buffalo River State Park.

Bergquist said he didn’t know the exact departure and arrival times of the Amtrak train.

Nilles graduated from Fargo South High in 2003 before studying screenwriting and film production at Minneapolis Community and Technical College.

After he graduated from college, he shot several short films in Fargo and Minneapolis, then concentrated on his performance career in Chicago, said longtime friend and local improv comic J.J. Gordon.