An unbelievable rally to support a 5-year-old boy who was viciously attacked by a man at Mall of America last week has generated more than half a million dollars for the family.
As of this writing, the GoFundMe has raised in excess of $544,000, more than double what it was when we wrote about the attention and support it was receiving just hours after the attack occurred last Friday.
The 5-year-old was at MOA with his mother Friday morning when police say he was randomly attacked by a man, and thrown from the third floor to ground level. The boy sustained life-threatening injuries in the nearly 40-foot drop.
"He had a peaceful sleep and is still continuing to fight his courageous battle, he's a strong survivor!" the GoFundMe page said in an update on Sunday. "No other significant updates at this time, but please continue to keep him in your prayers."
"We are all completely overwhelmed with the love and support that has come our way during this tragic time," the fundraiser update noted.
The attacker, identified by Bloomington police as 24-year-old Emmanuel Deshawn Aranda, is being held in Hennepin County Jail on probable cause attempted murder. Formal charges are expected to be filed by noon Monday.
"This is a horrific situation," said Bloomington Police Chief Jeff Potts on Saturday. "The family and this child are in our thoughts and prayers and I know the family appreciates all the thoughts and prayers as they hope for a full recovery of this child."
BMTN doesn't typically name crime suspects until they have been charged, however made an exception in this case given where this happened, the subsequent public interest in this incident, and the fact he has already been widely identified by other Twin Cities media.