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Editorial: Seconds turn into tragedy all around

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opinion Willmar,Minnesota 56201
West Central Tribune
Editorial: Seconds turn into tragedy all around
Willmar Minnesota 2208 Trott Ave. SW / P.O. Box 839 56201

A quick brawl between three men on a Mankato street early Sunday morning has changed the lives of those individuals and of their families.


Now Isaac Kolstad, 24, is lying in a Mankato hospital with a fractured skull, brain bleeding and lung issues. Phillip Nelson, 20, and Trevor Shelley, 21, are now facing multiple assault charges related to the incident.

According to the criminal complaint, Kolstad and Nelson got into a verbal discussion about 2 a.m. Sunday morning. Kolstad then allegedly struck Nelson in the back, which knocked Nelson and another man down to the ground.

Then Shelley, dressed in a red shirt, allegedly rushed up and struck Kolstad in the head, which knocked Kolstad out and knocked him to the ground, according to the complaint.

Then Nelson allegedly walked up and kicked the side of Kolstad’s head, who was lying helpless on the ground, according to the criminal complaint.

This is a tragic incident for all involved.

It is another example of alcohol-clouded judgment by young people, who believe they are invincible and make poor decisions with lifelong implications.

Kolstad is facing life-threatening medical issues, while Nelson and Shelley both face serious criminal charges. Nelson, a college football player, has also now been kicked off the Rutgers University football team.

Police are still looking for witnesses to learn more about the altercation. Who is exactly at fault remains to be determined by the judicial system.

This tragic story is a lesson for others.

Actions of less than a minute can change your life forever. Often times just walking away from the anger is the better option for all involved.