GoFundMe for Boy Thrown From Mall of America Reaches $500,000

Suspect faces attempted murder charges
April 15, 2019 Updated: April 15, 2019

A GoFundMe fundraiser page for a 5-year-old who was thrown from a Mall of America balcony surpassed its goal of $500,000, raising more than $580,000 as of April 15.

More than 17,000 people made donations in two days.

The news comes as charges were filed against the suspect in the case, 24-year-old Emmanuel Deshawn Aranda, reported KARE-11. Aranda is accused of approaching the boy, named Landen, before throwing him off the balcony at the Minnesota mall.

Officials charged him with attempted murder, the report said.

Nearly $500,000 was raised in one day.

Posted by New York Daily News on Sunday, April 14, 2019

Police said the incident took place without warning. After the incident, according to KARE, he pushed a witness against the wall after the bystander tried to stop him.

The mother of Landen said Aranda, whom they never met, approached them and got very close before she asked him if they were in the way and if they should move. Without warning, she said, Aranda grabbed the boy and threw him, KARE reported.

Officials said the boy was seriously injured in the fall.

The 5-year-old child, who was pushed or thrown off the balcony of a Mall of America in Minnesota, continues to fight for his life.

Posted by People on Sunday, April 14, 2019

According to a GoFundMe update on April 14, the boy “had a peaceful sleep and is still continuing to fight his courageous battle, he’s a strong survivor!”

“No other significant updates at this time, but please continue to keep him in your prayers. We will continue to keep updating as we can. Thank you all and God bless,” they added, saying that the family is asking for privacy at the time.

Landen is also in “stable condition, contrary to the rumors and attention seekers out there stating that he has passed,” the GoFundMe said on April 13.

“Landen is in my family’s prayers. Peace be with you all who love and care for him at this time of trial,” wrote one woman.

“I am so sorry for what happened to this little man,” donor Cassandra Sturtevant wrote on the page. “My family and I are keeping him in our hearts and praying for a speedy recovery. I plan to donate more when I have it.”

“From one mother to another I pray your sweet little boy recovers and the monster who did this to him gets what’s coming to him,” said  Nicole Johnson.

The Mall of America, typical of the closed mall pioneered in the 50s, in Bloomington, Minn. on Feb. 23, 2015. (Adam Bettcher/Getty Images)
The Mall of America, typical of the closed mall pioneered in the 50s, in Bloomington, Minn. on Feb. 23, 2015. (Adam Bettcher/Getty Images)

Arrest Update

Investigators questioned Aranda, who reportedly told them that he wanted to kill someone last week, but it “did not work out.”

According to KARE, he wanted to kill an adult, but he instead chose a young victim.

Detectives said he acknowledged that he planned and intended to kill someone at the Mall of America and was aware that what he was doing was wrong.

Aranda also said he went to the mall several times over the years to approach women, but his advances were spurned, KARE reported. The rejection, the report said, caused him to lash out.

The victim was a 5-year-old boy, named Landen, who fell about 40 feet to a stone floor. Medical responders at the scene…

Posted by Star Tribune on Monday, April 15, 2019

Court documents have indicated that judges have ordered Aranda to undergo mental health counseling, reported the Star-Tribune, which added that he needs to also take prescribed medications and abstain from drugs and alcohol.

“Defendant indicated he had been coming to the Mall for several years and had made efforts to talk to women in the Mall, but had been rejected,” and the rejection caused him to lash out and be aggressive,” the complaint said, according to The Associated Press.

Police caught Aranda on a light rail train at the mall waiting for it to leave.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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