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La Crosse man gets $500,000 bond for downtown murder, claims self-defense in stabbing victim 15 times



A cash bond of $500,000 was set Wednesday for a La Crosse man accused of fatally stabbing another man Tuesday night.


Bryant Q. Smith was charged with 1st degree murder for an attack at the Stokke Tower on South 6th Street.

The 50-year-old Smith appeared before Judge Gloria Doyle by video from the jail. He claimed self-defense.

“I didn’t kill him, I protected myself,” Smith said, while appearing by video from the county jail. “He was trying to murder me in my own home.”

The prosecution said the victim was stabbed in the head and back 15 times. Police believe Smith had pretended to stab the same person before the actual attack.

Defense attorney Zachariah Fudge said Smith called 911 after the stabbing.

An autopsy on the victim will be performed Thursday. Smith is set to return to court Friday.

A native of Prairie du Chien, Brad graduated from UW - La Crosse and has worked in radio news for more than 30 years, mostly in the La Crosse area. He regularly covers local courts and city and county government. Brad produces the features "Yesterday in La Crosse" and "What's Buried on Brad's Desk." He also writes the website "Triviazoids," which finds odd connections between events that happen on a certain date, and he writes and performs with the local comedy group Heart of La Crosse. Brad been featured on several national TV programs because of his memory skills.

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