Published: Tue, April 16, 2019
Worldwide | By Lisa Hogan

Man arrested after boy falls from balcony at USA shopping centre

Man arrested after boy falls from balcony at USA shopping centre

A 24-year-old suspect was arrested in connection with the child's fall, and police said he either threw or pushed him off a balcony.

The incident took place on Friday morning while Landen was enjoying a day out with his mother and sister, "when a stranger maliciously grabbed him and threw him over the third floor balcony for no apparent reason".

Friends of the family have created a GoFundMe page to help pay for the boy's medical bills and have nearly raised $700,000.

His GoFundMe page had raised more than US$500,000 (NZ$738,334).

Bloomington Police Chief Jeff Potts says at least one person tried to stop Aranda as he fled.

The post also said the boy, who is being treated at Children's Hospital Minneapolis, will need multiple surgeries "to try to get back to a normal life for a young, vibrant boy". They say he fell almost 40 feet after a man threw him off the balcony Friday.

Aranda was charged with attempted homicide and is now being held at the Bloomington Police Department.

In a separate incident three months later, Aranda reportedly threw ice water and tea at a woman in a mall restaurant when she declined to buy him food, CNN reported. He could be formally charged as early as Monday.

Authorities described the boy's injuries as life-threatening and said witnesses gave him first aid.

Aranda's criminal record includes two convictions in 2015 for obstruction of the legal process/interfering with a peace officer, as well as convictions for fifth-degree assault, trespassing and damage to property.

"The child is still alive, he's still receiving care, and I think we're just asking for thoughts and prayers for that child to recover", Potts told reporters outside his police department Saturday. Police credited a concerned bystander for chasing the suspect, and the Mall security for tracking him to the transportation station where he was apprehended.

"This is a horrific situation", Potts said.

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.

Police are on the scene of an incident at the Mall of America in Bloomington, Minnesota.

Police confirmed that there is video of the incident but said it will not be released until the investigation is complete.

The incident happened about 10:15 a.m.in the southeast corner of the mall.

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