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Greenfield Native Killed by Punch in Downtown St. Cloud, Murder Charges Filed

A Greenfield man was killed after teen jumped out of a car, punched him in the head and left the downtown St. Cloud crime scene. An arrest was made by St. Cloud Police earlier this week.

A Greenfield man and 2010 graduate of Orono High School died at a St. Cloud hospital Friday night from injuries sustained during an assault near St. Cloud State University.

Colton Ryan Gleason was walking with friends just after 11 p.m. Thursday night when, according to a Sunday report by the St. Cloud Times, an occupant got out of of a four-door passenger car and threw a punch.

Gleason fell, struck his head and was transported to St. Cloud Hospital. He died less than 24 hours later from what police say was head trauma. He was only 20 years old. 

The attack occurred in an alleyway between Eighth and Ninth Avenues, an area populated primarily by college students.

Update: A memorial fund has been established for the family of Colton Gleason. Donations can be made at any U.S. Bank branch 

St. Cloud Police made an arrest yesterday, with The St. Cloud Times reporting 17-year-old Jesse Jean Smithers of Sauk Rapids has been charged with second-degree murder after a punch he allegedly threw last Thursday knocked Gleason to the ground. 

St. Cloud Police Chief Blair Anderson said Gleason was in St. Cloud visiting friends.

Lake Minnetonka Patch interviewed Trevor Arneson, who grew up with Gleason and said Sunday night he was devestated by news of his friend's death.

"Colton made many great memories in my childhood," Arneson said. "I'll never forget any of them. Seeing such a great kid dying this way breaks my heart. He will always be apart of my life. My prayers go to the whole Gleason family. You'll never be forgotten Colton."

More coverage from Lake Minnetonka Patch: 

  • What friends of Colton Gleason are Saying Online
  • Arreest Made in Connection to Orono High School Grad's Death

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