Charges: Man Pushed 8-Year-Old from Slide Platform at Apple Valley Aquatic Center

August 02, 2018 05:51 PM

The video above originally aired Aug. 1.

A Maple Grove man was charged on Wednesday with third-degree assault stemming from an incident that injured an 8-year-old boy in Apple Valley on Tuesday.


According to authorities, Roman Adams, 18, reportedly picked up a child and pushed him off a slide platform at the Apple Valley Aquatic Center.

RELATED: Police: Boy, 8, Injured at Apple Valley Aquatic Center after Being Pushed 31 Feet from Slide Platform 

The criminal complaint states officers responded to a medical call involving an 8-year-old boy with a broken leg. Upon arrival at the scene, officers observed the child lying on the concrete sidewalk below a waterslide. 

An investigation determined the child had been standing on the platform at the top of the waterslide when a male picked the child up and threw the child over the railing. The platform is reportedly 28.1 feet from the ground, and the top of the railing is 31.9 feet from the ground. Adams was located and identified as the suspect. 

According to the criminal complaint, an officer questioned Adams what happened. Adams stated to police he was waiting in line to use the slide and it was taking a long time. He then admitted to throwing the child off the platform due to the line taking too long.

The child was admitted to a hospital. It was determined that the child sustained numerous fractures to both his feet, a broken femur in one leg and shattered bones in a shoulder. 

The boys' uncle tells KSTP he remains in the hospital, but is recovering.

Adams will make his first court appearance on Sept. 17.

Apple Valley Police Capt. Nick Francis said throughout the investigation it is clear that Adams has some type of developmental disability. Court documents show he uses a personal care attendant to help him when he leaves the house. Police said the attendant was at the water park at the time of the incident, but was not near Adams.

"To what extent, we are not sure, " Francis said. "That will be something that is learned as the days and weeks follow as we get an official diagnosis and get some other information." 

However, Francis added the reaction Adams gave police was that "he knew what he did was wrong." 

"There's a civil side of the court system that if his mental abilities kind of pushes to that type of a resolution, that's what will take place," Francis said about Adams' charges. "And that's well down that line that we can't even predict what will happen once he's in the court system."

Meanwhile, in a statement, the city said the aquatic center is committed to the safety of those using the facility, adding it marks the first time in 20 years of operation an incident like Wednesday's has occurred.

"Our organization is committed to continuous improvement and will continue to evaluate our policies and our facilities for any possible safety improvements," read part of the statement. "As required by Minnesota law, the City reports all pool-related injuries to the Department of Health to assist in improving public safety design.

"We have and will continue to train our lifeguards in providing high quality care for a variety of incidents that are likely to occur in the water park environment. Aquatic Center staff spend hundreds of hours each year training to deal with emergencies at the water park. This training was useful in staff's response to this very unusual incident. We are proud of the Aquatic Center staff and their prompt response. The City is providing counseling services for staff members affected by the traumatic experience. We encourage others who were negatively impacted by this incident to seek assistance."


Tommy Wiita

Copyright 2018 - KSTP-TV, LLC A Hubbard Broadcasting Company


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