Man accused of tossing boy from Mall of America balcony faces judge

Emmanuel Aranda left appears before a judge at the Hennepin County jail Tuesday

Emmanuel Aranda left appears before a judge at the Hennepin County jail Tuesday

By Tuesday afternoon, the campaign had raised $711,000, well over its $500,000 goal, since it was launched on Saturday.

Freeman said prosecutors will seek a $2 million bond to hold Aranda in jail for now, and "would pursue a longer sentence based on the aggravating factors of particular cruelty, the vulnerability of the boy and committing the violent act in front of other children and the boy's mother", according to a statement from his office.

The child reportedly plunged 40 feet and was rushed to a nearby hospital with multiple broken bones and head trauma.

Aranda is set to be in court again on May 14.

"The family appreciates the outpouring of support from across the country, reassuring them of the goodness in humanity, the overall goodness of humanity and God's will", said Stephen Tillitt, attorney for the boy's family. He gave his name and address when prompted by Judge Jeannice Reding and answered "not at all" when the judge asked if he had any questions. His plan was to throw an adult over the balcony, but he admitted he chose the young boy instead.

Emmanuel Aranda, 24, allegedly told police, he was looking for someone to kill, and was angry women rejected him there.

He was located on a light rail train at the mall, waiting for it to depart, according to the complaint.

Aranda was charged in July 2015 with causing damage inside stores after he threw items off the upper level of the mall to the lower level, court records obtained by CNN affiliate WCCO show.

The complaint goes on to allege that several witnesses identified Aranda as the man who had thrown the child. And, the complaint alleges he acknowledged throwing the child from the balcony and fleeing. The Star-Tribune reported that Aranda was previously convicted of first-degree property damage and was also arrested on charges of assault and theft in IL.

The boy's mother told authorities that Aranda walked up to her group as they stood outside of a restaurant located on the third floor of the shopping center.

After the attack, police say Aranda ran but was later found in the mall's transit station.

Police say he also threw water in a woman's face at the Mall of America and has a warrant for his arrest from IL for assault. He urged the Legislature and those who are calling for aggressive retribution to focus on mental health issues.

He returned Friday and picked the boy instead, USA media reported.

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