Friday, 19 April, 2019

Donations pour in for boy thrown from Mall of America balcony

Emmanuel Deshawn Aranda Emmanuel Deshawn Aranda Bloomington Police Department
Deanna Wagner | 14 April, 2019, 20:41

Bloomington Police report that a 5-year-old boy remains in critical condition after a 24-year-old man threw the child from a 40-foot balcony resulting in gruesome injuries on Saturday.

"He was enjoying a day at the Mall of America with his mom and friend on Friday morning when a stranger maliciously grabbed him and threw him over the 3rd floor balcony for no apparent reason".

Chief Jeff Potts said at a midday Saturday news conference that the child continues to receive care.

A witness says the child's mother was screaming that someone had thrown her child from the balcony.

"She was screaming 'Everyone pray, everyone pray. Oh my God, my baby, someone threw him over the edge,"' Brian Johnson told WCCO.

Aranda is being held on suspicion of attempted murder, and Potts said the police are expecting to submit the case to prosecutors by midday Monday in support of the charges.

Police said the child, who fell nearly 40 feet, has significant injuries.

Mr Potts continued: "At this time we do not believe that there is a relationship between the child or the family of the child". The child suffered life-threatening injuries and was taken to an area hospital.

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"Every prayer for your family and your sweet little boy!" another couple posted a minute earlier.

The suspect has a history of misdemeanor convictions, including some cases handled through a mental health court. "We started this GoFundMe for their family to help cover the huge medical costs and rehabilitation costs for the long ahead".

Onlookers said a woman began shouting after the child was attacked.

Potts said Bloomington police had not had any contact with the suspect since 2015, until Friday's incident.

Potts said one witness ran after Aranda as he fled the scene and tried to stop him.

An employee from the Bare Minerals store went on to tell police that Aranda had "walked into the store, and without saying anything, swept his hand across a display table, knocking off and breaking two containers of lip gloss valued at $18.00 each and three shot glasses valued at $2.00 each", the outlet reported.

Aranda asked the woman to buy him something while they sat outside the restaurant, waiting for it to open. The woman refused, and Aranda allegedly threw a glass of water in her face and a glass of tea that struck her leg. Aranda was under a trespass notice at the time banning him from the mall until July 4, 2016. As part of his probation for the assault in the restaurant, he was barred from visiting the Mall of America until December 29, 2017.