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.