ROCHESTER, Minn. (WCCO) — A 22-year-old man is dead after his body was found in bitterly cold temperatures outside a Rochester residence over the weekend.
Police say Ali Gombo likely died from hypothermia.
A neighbor called 911 around 10 a.m. Sunday after seeing a man’s body outside a home in the 900 block of 4th Avenue Northwest.
Police say Gombo had gone to the bar with friends Saturday night and was dropped off around 2:30 Sunday morning. It’s believed the doors and windows were locked and he didn’t have keys to get inside. He apparently tried knocking to see if his sister would let him in.
“It wasn’t like ‘help’ or ‘hey, man, come over here,’ it was like ‘hey,'” said neighbor Marco Magano.
Magano said he heard someone yelling outside around the time Gombo was dropped off, so he got out of bed to investigate.
“I didn’t hear anything anymore so I thought everything was fine. I just closed the back door and went back to sleep,” Magano said.
Another neighbor found Gombo’s body the next morning. Footprints were found around the home, and smeared blood was found on doors. Some of Gombo’s clothing was also found in the yard. In stages of hypothermia, a person will begin taking off clothing, police said.
Police said it’s a sad reminder of just how dangerous the cold can be. With extreme conditions expected the next few days, they say now is a good time to do welfare checks on family, friends and neighbors.
That’s exactly what neighbor David Eliason plans to do.
“For me, it’s about covering every square inch of skin so you don’t have anything exposed at all. Cover everything up when you can,” said Eliason. “It’s amazing how fast it can turn from fun to dangerous. I think people underestimate that a lot.”