Winona man steals car at gun point; consumes meth during 107 MPH police pursuit

The man stole the vehicle of a passerby who had stopped to help the man get his vehicle out of a snowbank.

Jonathan Marquist Payton
Jonathan Marquist Payton.
Contributed / Winona County Sheriff's Office

WINONA — A 37-year-old Winona man is facing a litany of charges after stealing a vehicle at gunpoint and consuming methamphetamine during a high-speed police pursuit, according to new charges filed in Winona County District Court.

Jonathan Marquist Payton is being held in the Winona County Jail on a $100,000 unconditional bail or bond on charges of first-degree aggravated robbery, second-degree assault, ineligible possession of a firearm, possessing a firearm with the serial number removed, unauthorized use of a motor vehicle and fleeing a peace officer in a motor vehicle, all felonies.

He's also facing a gross misdemeanor charge for refusing to take a driving-while-impaired test. His next court appearance is scheduled for March 23, 2023.

According to the criminal complaint:

Payton's Ford Edge was stuck in a snowbank in Winona County on March 6, 2023. When a man passing by stopped to help him get out, the man observed later told law enforcement he saw Payton with a blackberry brandy bottle.


Payton then pulled out a 9 mm Glock pistol and pressed it against the man. The man was able to grab the pistol and take it away from Payton.

However, Payton then stole the man's vehicle. The man checked the pistol, which was unloaded and did not have a magazine or a round in the chamber.

A Winona County Sheriff's deputy spotted Payton driving the vehicle at 97 miles per hour in a 60 mph zone.

During the chase, law enforcement deployed stop sticks three times before all of the vehicle's tires were deflated and came to a stop. Payton's speed during the pursuit reached 107 miles per hour.

After being taken into custody, deputies observed signs of intoxication, including slurred speech, delayed reactions and red eyes. A preliminary breath test Payton took registered zero. He told law enforcement that he ingested methamphetamine during the pursuit.

Payton was transported to an emergency room in Winona.

He provided a blood sample to comply with a blood draw warrant, but it was an insufficient amount. Payton then refused to offer more blood or to provide a urine test.

Officer located an empty blackberry brandy bottle on the floorboard of the stolen vehicle with its contents splashed around the vehicle's interior.

Mark Wasson has been a public safety reporter with Post Bulletin since May 2022. Previously, he worked as a general assignment reporter in the southwest metro and as a public safety reporter in Willmar, Minn. Readers can reach Mark at
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