When the Hoffmann family planned their trip to the mall that day, they didn’t even think that their perfect day together can turn into their worst nightmare.
They enjoyed their day when a stranger flung their 5-year old son, Landen, off a third-floor balcony at the Mall of America in Bloomington, Minnesota. The body suffered life-threatening injuries from the fall, while everyone else was puzzled at what could have made the man take such a monstrous step.
The assailant was a 24-year-old man no one of the family knew, and according to a witness, the mother of Landen started screaming that someone had thrown her child from the third-floor balcony near the southeast corner of the mall.
According to the Sun, Landen Hoffmann was left in a pool of blood after plunging to the marble ground in front of numerous horrified witnesses at the Mall.
After tossing the body, another witness saw the man trying to escape and as chased down and apprehended near the light rail station. He was later identified as Emmanuel Deshawn Aranda, and according to the police, this has been an isolated incident. He was expected to be transferred to the custody of the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Department on the next day, 13 of April.
Later, the police found out that Aranda has been involved in misdemeanors at the Mall of America previously as well, and had been banned from the mall in the past.
A 5-year-old is being treated for “significant injuries” after witnesses say the child was thrown from a third-floor balcony at the Mall of America. A 24-year-old man is in custody. https://t.co/b3mj5TddEa pic.twitter.com/gK3uvZg07j
— CNN Breaking News (@cnnbrk) April 12, 2019
He had been charged and convicted of misconducts in two separate incidents at the mall in 2015, for damaging inside stores, throwing items off of a balcony to a lower level and resisting arrest, and months later, for throwing a glass of water and a glass of tea at a woman inside of Twin City Grill after she allegedly refused to buy him food.
One friend of the Hoffmann family, Noah Hanneman, set up a GoFundMe page “to help cover their immense medical costs and rehabilitation costs”. He explained that Landen is the sweetest kindest 5-year old, full of energy and life, a boy who enjoys soccer and hockey and playing with friends and family.
He also wrote that the family has no idea why would this man want to harm Landen, as his family is truly generous, and one that everyone would hope to live next door. The 5-year old has a very long road to recovery ahead, but he is courageous and fights to get back his normal life.
Bloomington Police Chief Jeff Potts updating us on a child that was pushed or thrown over a third-floor railing at the Mall of America. 24-year-old man in custody but they don’t know the relationship to the child, who was taken to a hospital with critical injuries. pic.twitter.com/ecZreRDnoI
— Rob Olson (@RobOlsonFOX9) April 12, 2019
After a few days, Noah wrote that many people have tried to copy the GOFundMe page, so he removed Landen’s picture, and the family decided not to post photos at this time.
According to a recent update from the Bloomington PD, Landen is in stable condition, contrary to the rumors stating that he has passed. The crowdfunding campaign has surpassed its goal of $500,000 with well-wishers donating a total of $537,219 so far.
— WCCO – CBS Minnesota (@WCCO) April 12, 2019
Landen’s aunt commented that the entire family thanks all the people who showed their love and support, and they are now trying to focus on love instead of hatred.
In their statement, The Mall of America said that they have no words to express their sadness and shock after this senseless act.
Their only concern now is for the wellbeing of the family and Landen, as well as for the numerous people who may have witnessed the incident. They offered their counseling services which are available for anyone who may need assistance and stated that there will provide their full co-operation while the Bloomington Police Department continues to investigate the cause of this incident.
The rest of us can only pray for this humble family and their beautiful son, in order to help them through these highly difficult times, and hope that Landen will be better sooner than expected.