The largest US mall has agreed to crack down on trespassers as part of a settlement with the family of a boy who was twice banned from entering the mall by a crazed man who threw him from a third-floor balcony.
The Mall of America in Bloomington, Minnesota, announced Monday that it will increase safety policies after 5-year-old Landen Hoffman fell 40 feet from Emmanuel Aranda in 2019.
Aranda told investigators he was at the mall “looking for someone to kill” because he was angry at being rejected as a romantic interest.
The then 24-year-old pleaded guilty to attempted murder later that year and is serving a 19-year sentence.
In a lawsuit filed last year, the victim’s family claims mall security should have prevented Aranda from carrying out the attack, alleging authorities knew about his “violent, aggressive and erratic” behavior. they did
The suburban Minneapolis megaplex and the family released a joint statement Monday about the new security procedures.
“Mall of America and its family have agreed to work together to focus on security and are working together to implement policy changes to the existing offense limits for violent offenders that will not allow such individuals into their buildings. “, the statement said. .
Young Landen was seriously injured in the attack and underwent more than 15 surgeries in 2019 to remove two arms and legs, fractures to his face and skull, and to remove his spleen, his family said.
Just six months after the accident, he was “walking perfectly” and back at school, thanking the “angels” for catching him from his fall and helping him recover.
“The boy’s recovery is nothing short of a miracle and the focus is on his health and well-being, including his privacy during this time,” the statement said on Monday.
“Mall and the family request that any changes be named after the youngster.”
Neither the mall nor Landen’s family provided further details about the settlement Monday, and it was unclear how much compensation was paid. When the lawsuit was filed, the plaintiff’s attorneys said they paid $1.7 million for the family’s medical expenses.