Edmonton police are investigating after a man was found dead at an apartment complex in the city's south end Saturday afternoon.

At about 3 p.m. MT, police were called to a building in the 300 block of Saddleback Road after residents reported hearing a shot fired.

When officers arrived, they found a dead man in the building's parking lot.

Neighbour Chris Mitchell heard the gunshot.

"I just heard the loud pop. It sounded like a car backfiring but it did sound like a gunshot to me," he said.

On Saturday evening, a body covered by a tarp could be seen on the ground next to a maroon SUV with the driver's door hanging open.

The victim has been identified as Jesse Lee James, 23, of Edmonton. He is known to police and investigators believe his death was not random.


The car (similar to this one) is described as a white, early-1990s model, four-door BMW sedan with tinted windows and minor damage to the passenger side, Edmonton police say. ((Police handout))

Several witnesses told CBC News they heard three people arguing, followed by the gunshot. They say two people then fled in a white car driven by a third person.

On Sunday afternoon, Edmonton police released a description of the vehicle they believe the suspects used to flee the scene.

"We have interviewed several witnesses and were able to come up with a detailed description of the suspect vehicle," Det. Brian Robertson said.

The car is described as a white, early-1990s model, four-door BMW sedan with tinted windows and minor damage to the passenger side. Police say there could be a small decal in the top centre of the windshield.

An autopsy is expected to take place on Wednesday. Police have not confirmed the cause of death.

Anyone with information is asked to call Edmonton police at 780-423-4567 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.

It is the city's 18th homicide of the year.