A young Alberta man was killed trying to stop two thieves from driving off with his truck, Red Deer police said as they asked the public for help tracking down the culprits.

Officers found Dawson Wegner Cramer, 23, seriously injured in an alley behind Nordegg Crescent just before 5 a.m. Wednesday after he attempted to intervene as two men made off with his 2001 Ford F650.

Cramer, also known as D.J., was rushed to hospital, where he died.

The two suspects fled the scene in the large white truck and abandoned it a short distance away, where a witness saw the men run into a wooded area, police say.

Members of the public are urged to come forward if they saw a white truck being driven erratically between 4:50 a.m. and 5:50 a.m. Wednesday in the area of Nordegg Crescent, Nolan Street, Page Avenue, Gaetz Avenue or 76 Street in Red Deer.

Anyone with a video recording of the incident is also asked to contact investigators.

Anyone with information is asked to call police at 403-343-5575 or Crime Stoppers anonymously at 1-800-222-8477.

The Calgary RCMP's Major Crimes Unit is now leading the investigation.

Other Albertans killed while trying to stop thieves

It's not the first case of an Albertan being killed while trying to stop a thief fleeing in a truck.

In 2014, Adam Groves was killed trying to stop a man from taking his 2006 Dodge Ram from his Rundle Park home in Edmonton. The suspect fled the scene but was later caught following a dramatic police chase.

And in 2015, Centex employee Maryam Rashidi was killed in Calgary when she was hit by a stolen truck while trying to stop a gas and dash at the station where she worked.

The suspect in that case was later caught, too, following a standoff at a Calgary home.