Man Who Threw 5-Year-Old Off Mall of America Balcony Pleads Guilty, as Boy ‘Continues to Heal’
The 5-year-old boy who suffered severe injuries after he was allegedly thrown from a third-floor balcony at the Mall of America is showing signs of recovery, according to a family friend.
The boy’s latest test results have been positive, though he remains in intensive care after he endured massive head trauma and multiple broken bones in his arms and legs, Noah Hanneman, who launched a GoFundMe page in support of the family, wrote.
“We have good news to share with you all on this Good Friday! Our miracle child Landen is showing real signs of recovery. New test results have been positive, though he remains in intensive care with a long road ahead,” Hanneman wrote as an update on the page. “Our faith in God, and our Savior Jesus, is strong and we are gaining more reason for optimism day by day. We continue our request for privacy as we focus on Landen, and thank you for respecting our wishes. Just know that we all feel your overwhelming love, prayers and support. He is answering our prayers and they ARE working.”
Family attorney Stephen Tillitt did not immediately respond to PEOPLE’s request for comment.
Hanneman did not clarify which types of tests have yielded positive results.
Police say the boy, named Landen, was thrown an estimated 40 feet over the railing to the Minnesota mall’s first floor while standing with his mother outside the third-floor Rainforest Café on April 12.
Emmanuel Deshawn Aranda, 24, was arrested and charged on suspicion of attempted premeditated first-degree murder, which carries a maximum sentence of 20 years to life in prison. It is unclear if he has an attorney.
Authorities said last week that Aranda was intentionally “looking for someone to kill” at the mall after he was rejected by multiple women he tried to speak to, according to a criminal complaint obtained by PEOPLE.
Aranda allegedly told police he had first considered choosing to kill an adult at the mall on Thursday “because they usually stand near the balcony,” but that did not “work out,” the criminal complaint states.
Hanneman’s GoFundMe page to help cover the boy’s “immense” medical and rehabilitation expenses has so far raised more than $945,000.
Hanneman wrote on the page last week that Landen is making “small steps towards the healing process.”
“The power of prayer is simply amazing. We all have been extremely humbled by the outpouring of support and prayers from everyone one. Thank you for showing us there is so much good not only in our community but across the globe,” Hanneman wrote.
He added that Landen’s condition is “similar to previous days,” but that “each new day is a good day.”
“Landen’s recovery is expected to be ongoing for a long time. While it’s hard to estimate costs, this will change everything for their family and require much of their time and focus,” he wrote.