Teen Posts Bail & Released From Custody; Investigators Say He Has Cognitive Disabilities

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — An 18-year-old faces charges after he allegedly picked up and threw an 8-year-old boy off a 31-foot water slide platform Tuesday afternoon.

Roman Alexander Adams of Maple Grove faces one felony count of third-degree assault in connection to the July 31 incident.

According to the criminal complaint, Apple Valley police officers were dispatched at around 1:35 p.m. to the Apple Valley Aquatic Center on a medical call involving an 8-year-old child with a broken leg.

When officers arrived, they found the child lying on the concrete sidewalk below a waterslide.

Police say an investigation determined the child was standing on top of the platform at the top of the waterslide when Adams allegedly picked him up and threw him over the railing encircling the platform. From the top of the railing, it is 31.9 feet from the ground.

When questioned by police, Adams said he was waiting in the line to use the slide, and that it was taking too long, so he “pushed” the child over the railing and saw him fall, according to the criminal complaint.

Investigators later learned Adams has cognitive disabilities, and that a personal care assistant was with him at the park, but not in line with him for the slide.

The victim, who was admitted to the hospital, suffered numerous fractures to both of his feet, a broken femur in one leg and shattered bones in a shoulder.

Apple Valley Police Capt. Nick Francis said there’s not a lot of safety mechanisms in place for when someone commits a crime like this.

“It’s been open for 20 years, we’ve never had an incident of this magnitude,” said Apple Valley Police Capt. Nick Francis. “Everybody in the water park that saw it happen are just devastated by it.”

Police are also investigating another incident involving Adams at the same water park. He is accused of biting a lifeguard on July 13. The lifeguard’s injuries are said to be minor and did not require medical attention. Police were not initially notified of this incident.

Adams posted bond Thursday morning and is no longer in custody. His first appearance in court is scheduled for September 17.

If convicted, Adams could face up to five years in prison on the assault charge.

A GoFundMe page has been set up to help the victim and his family.

Comments (10)
  1. Roman Alexander Adams should be in a cage at the zoo not at the waterpark.

    1. You saying that a person with a mental disability should be in a cage and treated like an animal is an horrendous thing to say. Not saying what he did was right in anyway but you should take a step back and look at the situation first before saying things like this.

  2. The way your headline is written is misleading, “Teen Charged In Water Park Attack On Boy Accused Of Biting Lifeguard,” implies that the boy bit the lifeguard. When, in fact, according to the article, it is the teen that was accused of biting the lifeguard. Less confusing might be: Teen Charged in Water Park Attack Accused of Biting Lifeguard in Earlier Incident

  3. Why wasn’t the PCA with his client?

  4. Kevin Smith says:

    Terrible supervision of an impaired child. Pathetic to say the least and the caretaker should be charged especially knowing the disabled child already bit a lifeguard!!

  5. Ruth Anne Drabison Eastland says:

    Perhaps netting should be installed at the taller parts of high waterslides