The 5-year-old boy who was thrown from a third-floor balcony in a random attack at the Mall of America has reportedly been improving in the days since the attack.
The boy, identified by family members as Landen, was initially listed in critical condition with life-threatening injuries after a stranger threw the boy from the balcony at the mall. Though the boy is still in intensive care in a Minnesota hospital, family members shared a positive update this week on a GoFundMe page set up to help pay for the boy’s medical expenses.
“Our miracle child Landen is showing real signs or recovery. New test results have been positive, though he remains in intensive care with a long road ahead,” the post read. “Our faith in God, and our Savior Jesus, is strong and we are gaining more reason for optimism day by day. We continue our request for privacy as we focus on Landen and thank you for respecting our wishes.”
The campaign has raised more than $900,000 and is moving steadily toward a $1 million goal, as well-wishers from across the country donate tens, hundreds, and sometimes even thousands of dollars while leaving messages of support for the young boy and his family.
Police in Minneapolis said the suspect, 24-year-old Emmaniel Aranda, threw the boy from the balcony in a random attack.
As a report from WCCO noted, Aranda had a history of incidents at the Mall of America that led to him being banned from the mall in 2015. That year, Aranda was accused of damaging stores and throwing items from a lower-level balcony. Later in the year, he was arrested for allegedly throwing a glass of water at a woman who had refused to buy food for him.
The man reportedly told police that he went to the mall looking for “someone to kill” after going through a breakup.
CRIMINAL COMPLAINT: Man charged with throwing 5-year-old boy off 3rd-floor balcony at Mall of America told police he was angry at being rejected by women at the mall & was "looking for someone to kill" – https://t.co/6iEnJB73bC pic.twitter.com/T4O8Df47FM
— WSB-TV (@wsbtv) April 15, 2019
The community has rallied around the boy and his family, who have asked for privacy as they focus on the young boy’s touchy recovery. Friends and family have offered some updates through the GoFundMe page, while also sharing some details about Landen.
“He is full of energy and life and enjoys soccer, playing with friends and family and playing hockey with his brother and sister,” a note on the GoFundMe page read.
The boy is expected to have a long recovery ahead of him. The man accused of throwing the boy from the mall’s balcony is in jail facing charges of attempted murder.