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Sauk Rapids Teen Faces Attempted Murder and Manslaughter Charges in Colton Gleason Death

09/25/2012 - 2:55 AM

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John Gleason and family members speak to the media after court arraignment Tuesday.

17-year-old Jesse Jean Smithers of Sauk Rapids has been charged with one count of second degree murder, one count first degree manslaughter and one count of first degree assault in Stearns County District Court Tuesday in the death of 20-year-old Colton Gleason. Smithers was arraigned before Judge Frank Kundrat who ordered that he remain in custody without bail pending further court proceedings.

The Stearns County Attorney’s Office also filed a motion to certify Smithers to be charged as an adult. The Stearns County Attorney’s Office based on the investigation says that Smithers was a passenger inside the vehicle that was driving through the alley late last Thursday night on the city's south side where Gleason and two people were walking. According to the attorney's office, Smithers told the driver to stop the car, he got out of the vehicle and approached the group and struck Gleason in the head with a closed fist. The report says after the victim dropped to the ground, Smithers got back into the vehicle and told others he had “punched the guy”.

Gleason died Friday night at the St. Cloud Hospital from the injuries he sustained. Gleason was from Greenfield, Minnesota and had attended Minnesota State University-Mankato. A probable cause hearing for Smithers has been set for October 2nd in Stearns County District Court. The court will determine if Smithers will be charged as an adult on October 30 during a certification hearing.