Detectives start murder investigation with few clues after body found in burning car

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JEFFERSON COUNTY, Colo. -- Investigators in Jefferson County hope a cyclist might provide clues in an apparent murder that happened Sunday morning.

The victim was found in a burning car in the 9500 block of Cougar Road and on Monday, deputies said they had little to go on.

The Jefferson County Coroner's Office had not released any information about the victim's identity, gender or how the person died. But investigators said a critical piece of evidence might have been recorded on video.

The sheer brazenness of the crime is shocking: Setting a car on fire in a heavily populated area at 11:30 on Sunday morning. Max Dymek and another man ran to try to help.

"I saw the front of the car from the passenger compartment totally in flames and the fire was spread around the car up the grass near the road so we started spraying it down but quickly ran out of the materials," Dymek said.

The car was along Cougar Road just off Deer Creek Canyon Road. It's a popular place for bicyclists on weekends who often record their rides on GoPro cameras.

"You don't know what you don't know and when you're focusing on your ride and you're riding your bike and watching out for your safety of traffic that GoPro might have caught something that you're not even aware is there," Jefferson County Sheriff's Office spokesman Mark Techmeyer said.

The remains of the victim were so badly burned that it's expected to take the coroner longer than normal to determine the victim's gender and cause of death.

"I'm sure everybody in the neighborhood is a little bit concerned, but just the fact that there was a person in there is just really sad and just horrendous," Dymek said.

Detectives are just looking for a single piece of information to determine the direction of this apparent murder investigation.

"The death is very suspicious in nature. We are at ground zero for the launch of this investigation we have a long way to go," Techmeyer said.

The sheriff's office is asking anyone who shot video in that area between 10 a.m. and noon Sunday to contact them. Crime Stoppers is offering a $2,000 reward and you can remain anonymous by calling 720-913-7867.

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