Niagara Regional Police

Niagara Regional Police. (The Canadian Press/Francis Vachon)

Niagara regional police say a 45-year-old man whose body was found in an SUV in a rural area outside Hamilton was the victim of a homicide.

Police say the body of Johnathan Bailey, of Hamilton was found at about 9:30 a.m. Wednesday (in the area of South Chippawa and North Chippawa Roads) in the Township of West Lincoln.

An autopsy was scheduled for Thursday at Hamilton General Hospital.

Investigators say they are searching for a black 2005 Ford Escape, which is believed to be associated with the homicide case.

They say the vehicle has aluminum rims, a roof rack and a stick family decal on the rear bumper with a father, mother and son.

The vehicle is believed to be from Ontario or Quebec, and police add there is no front licence plate.

Anyone with information is asked to contact police.