Man pleads guilty to throwing boy from Mall of America balcony

 – Emmanuel Aranda, the man charged with throwing a 5-year-old boy from a third floor balcony at Mall of America, entered a guilty plea Tuesday morning in Hennepin County District Court. Aranda, 24, agreed to a sentence of 19 years in prison

Aranda was charged with first-degree attempted murder for the April 12 attack. According to the criminal complaint, he told police he went to the mall, “looking for someone to kill” and knew what he was doing was wrong.

Prosecutors filed a notice with the court last week that they intended to seek an aggravated sentence because the child victim was “particularly vulnerable” and “was treated with particular cruelty” and the incident happened in front of the boy’s mother and “numerous” other children. That motion was dropped as part of Tuesday’s plea deal.

The boy injured in the incident is alert and conscious, according an update from a family representative at the end of April. They were hoping he could return home by June, according to the latest update. A GoFundMe campaign for the boy’s recovery has raised more than $1 million.

Aranda will be sentenced June 3.

Categories: Crime, Minnesota News