A 9-year-old boy remains in hospital days after surviving a stabbing in a Target in a downtown Los Angeles shopping center.
A man, described as 40 years old and homeless, entered the store in the FIGat7th shopping center at about 6:30 p.m. and grabbed a large butcher-style knife from a shelf. He approached Braydon Medina, saying he was going to kill the 9-year-old boy, CBS News reported.
When Medina tried to flee, the man grabbed him and stabbed him twice in the shoulder. A 25-year-old woman intervened and shielded Medina, suffering a stab wound in her chest.
Other people pulled the woman into a pharmacy and closed the gate to protect her, according to ABC 7.
“[He] confronted him and told the young boy he was going to stab him and kill him,” LAPD Chief Michel Moore said at a press conference shortly after the attack. “He repeated that more than once. The young child attempted to flee and leave, ignore him, move away.”
“The suspect without any further provocation suddenly attacked and stabbed this child in the back,” Moore added, saying that a store security guard eventually shot and killed the suspect.
The name of the suspect remains unknown at this time, and both Medina and the woman went to the hospital for treatment. Police determined that the suspect did not know the victims, and the attack was unprovoked.
Medina’s family on a GoFundMe page offered their prayers for the woman as thanks for her help, which may have saved Medina.
The family revealed that Medina remains in stable condition and will require physical therapy to make a full recovery as he has some “complications in his legs.”
“Thankfully, he is able to move them, but he’s definitely going to undergo physical therapy to fully recover,” his cousin Lizzette Molina wrote on the page. “He is a strong child, we know he will get through this.”
The family had raised $14,000 of the target $25,000 they need to pay for Medina’s medical bills and therapy for the family to process what happened.