A teenage boy is charged with the manslaughter of an Invercargill man after an early-morning incident on Saturday.

A 16-year-old has appeared in court over the death of Matthew Frederick Coley, who was named today.

Mr Coley, 40, died in hospital yesterday evening.

Police allege the teen assaulted him at about 2am on Saturday during "an incident" on the corner of Dee and Esk Sts, near a Night and Day store.

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The teen will stay in custody and reappear in court next month.

In 2014, Mr Coley enrolled at the now defunct Peter Arnett School of Journalism at the Southern Institute of Technology.

"He's certainly not the sort of person you'd expect to see in the news for this," said former tutor Paddy Lewis. "He kept to himself and didn't look for trouble."

Mr Lewis said Mr Coley, known as Matt, had a special interest in local government and finance reporting and liked to spend time crafting a perfect piece.

Mr Coley's LinkedIn profile says he obtained a bachelor of management studies from Waikato University in the 1990s, with a major in marketing and international business.
He attended Thames High School.

Mr Coley didn't finish the journalism course, leaving to work as a chef in Manapouri.

Police are thanking people for their help with the case.

Anyone who witnessed what happened can call Invercargill police on 03 211 0400.