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Mall of America settles lawsuit with family of boy who was thrown from balcony

The Mall of America said Monday that it will toughen its trespassing policies as part of a settlement with the family of a Woodbury boy who was severely injured when a man with a history of causing disturbances at the shopping center threw the child from a third-floor balcony.

File: Emmanuel Aranda. (Courtesy of the Bloomington Police Department) 

Additional details of the settlement were not released by the boy’s family or the mall.

The boy, identified only as Landen, was 5 in April 2019 when Emmanuel Aranda threw him nearly 40 feet to the ground. Aranda, who had been banned from the Bloomington mall twice in previous years, told investigators that he went there “looking for someone to kill” after women rejected his advances. He pleaded guilty to attempted first-degree murder and was sentenced to 19 years in prison for the attack on Landen.

The family alleged in a lawsuit filed last year that mall security should have prevented Aranda from “prowling” at the building without an officer following him closely. The lawsuit alleged that the mall and its security detail knew about previous “violent, aggressive, and erratic” behavior that Aranda had displayed at the shopping center.

In a joint statement announcing the settlement, the mall and the family said they will work together on policy changes to prevent similar incidents.

“Mall of America and the family have agreed to work together with a focus on safety, and already are jointly pursuing policy changes to existing trespass limits for violent criminals so as to give greater ability to preclude such persons from their premises,” the statement said.

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