Emmanuel Deshawn Aranda, 24, is being held at the Hennepin County Jail on an attempted homicide charge. Accused of throwing a five-year-old child from the third floor of Minnesota’s Mall of America, a fall of more than 40 feet.
Police do not suspect any prior relationship between Aranda and the boy or their families. The suspect had an active warrant for his arrest in connection with an assault case from 2017. In 2015, he was convicted of misdemeanors stemming from two separate incidents at the mall, leading to a ban he would eventually violate, according to WCCO.
Aranda was charged with damaging stores, throwing items off of a balcony and resisting arrest in July of 2015. After being issued a trespass notice to keep away from the mall, he returned a few months later and was arrested for panhandling and throwing glasses at diners in a mall restaurant.
“Our officers initially responded and performed first aid on the child along with some other witnesses and passersby,” said Bloomington Police Chief Jeff Potts Saturday. “The child did suffer significant injuries,” he added, noting the child was being treated at a local hospital without revealing his condition.
While the child, whose identity has been revealed by British publications, has been hospitalized, social media users moved to action by the random attack have donated more than $340,000 in donations from more than 10,000 users.
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. The family doesn’t know him and are completely clueless as to why this monster would target their family with this heinous act of violence. My wife and His mother have been best friends since they were 3 years old. They have grown up together, started their families together and truly have a lifelong friendship for the ages. Their family is always so generous to others, they give without expecting anything in return and are the type of family you always hope to live next door.
Aranda, from Bloomington, was taken into custody at the transit station at the Mall of America Friday after he was seen by witnesses after the child fell from the third floor. Potts thanked officers Saturday, along with first responders and a bystander who witnessed Aranda push the child and kept him from fleeing.
When Aranda was arrested for breaking computers at a local library, he told officers that he had “some anger issues,” noting “it does not happen all the time.”
“We’re very appreciative of his efforts to try to intervene and help out in a very difficult situation,” Potts said.