Boy Thrown from Mall of America Balcony Being Treated

Boy Thrown from Mall of America Balcony Being Treated

Witnesses said Emmanuel Deshawn Aranda, 24, either pushed or threw the 5-year-old boy on Friday morning from the third level of the Bloomington mall's interior to the first-level floor almost 40 feet below, police said.

Landen Hoffmann is the five-year-old boy who was thrown off a third-floor balcony at Minnesota's Mall of America on Friday.

Jeff Potts, the police chief for Bloomington Police Department said: "First of all, most importantly, the child that fell is still alive".

WCCO-TV in Minnesota reported a witness heard the boy's mother shouting "Everybody pray, everybody pray".

"'She was screaming 'Everyone pray, everyone pray".

Police said Emmanuel Deshawn Aranda, 24, picked the boy at random and threw him over the third story balcony. He is being held at Hennepin County Jail pending charges for attempted homicide.

A 24-year-old suspect has been arrested in connection with the incident that happened Friday.

At the news conference Saturday, Potts said his police department had an additional encounter with Aranda, in which he refused to pay his bill at a restaurant.

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The child sustained life-threatening injuries in the incident and was treated by witnesses and emergency services at the scene before being rushed to hospital in a critical condition.

Onlookers said a woman began shouting after the child was attacked. Aranda was banned from the Mall of America through early July 2016, the court records show.

On Friday, the boy "was enjoying a day at the Mall of America with his mom and friend ... when a stranger maliciously grabbed him and threw him over the third-floor balcony for no apparent reason".

Potts believes this most recent incident is isolated and said the Mall of America continues to be a very safe place to go.

Witnesses told police that the alleged attacker "took off running immediately after the incident". In one 2015 incident, Aranda was charged with damaging stores by throwing items from the upper level to the lower level, according to court records obtained by WCCO.

He's now at the Bloomington Police Department, Potts said, and authorities don't believe there is any further threat to the public. The charges state he threw a drinking glass at a customer at Twin City Grill in the Mall of America.

Aranda asked the woman to buy him something while they sat outside the restaurant, waiting for it to open.

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