Boy who fell 12 stories from high-rise in Aventura was visiting from Aruba, police say

Victim identified as 8-year-old Justin Fernandes-Pedra

By Amanda Batchelor - Senior Digital Editor

AVENTURA, Fla. - An 8-year-old boy who died Thursday after falling 12 stories from the top of the Echo Luxury Condominiums in Aventura was visiting South Florida from Aruba, authorities said.

The victim was identified Friday as Justin Fernandes-Pedra.

According to a police report, Justin lives with his father and brother in Aruba and they were in Aventura to visit the boys' mother, who lives in one of the penthouses of the Echo building on Northeast 188th Street.

Aventura police said the family was getting ready to go to Disney World when the brothers decided to play hide and seek while their parents finished getting ready for the trip.

According to the report, the boys took the stairs to the roof of the building, where Justin eventually fell from shortly after 3 p.m.

Police said Justin landed in Peace Park, which is adjacent to the Echo building. 

"One of our school resource officers assigned to the charter elementary school right across the street (arrived) pretty much minutes later and began CPR, as well as other arriving officers on the scene," Aventura police spokesman Chris Goranitis said. 

Police said Justin was airlifted to Joe DiMaggio Children's Hospital but was pronounced dead upon arrival.

Authorities said the investigation remains open; however, based on witness testimony, it appears this was an accidental fall.
 

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