A six-year-old is now scared to go out and play after he was bullied and beaten up by a gang of teenagers – on his FIRST trip to the park without his mum.
Little Jacob Hendriksen was finally allowed to go to the park with his big brother Callum, ten, as a reward for being good, but fled in tears after he was set upon by a gang of about 15 teenagers.
Now mum Claire Frake, 34, is calling for action after her little lad said he didn’t want to go out to play any more, because he was hurt in the unprovoked attack as he was trying to climb up a rain shelter.
She said: “One of the teenagers pretended to help him and pulled him up by his arms but then let him go mid-air.
“As he fell, he grabbed the side of the shelter to hold on, but one of the other kids kicked and punched him until he fell to the ground.
“When he was on the floor, one of the girls grabbed his legs and dragged him across the park.”
“He tried to run over to my other son, but another girl then grabbed a hold of him and cut him with one of her fingernails.”
It was the first time that single mum-of-three Claire, who suffers from chronic pain illness, Fibromyalgia, had let her two youngest sons and an 11-year-old pal visit the park in Folkestone, Kent, on their own.
She gave the boys an hour at the park before they had to come home, but after 40 minutes, they were back – with Jacob nursing multiple cuts and bruises.
Claire had given Callum a mobile phone so that he could contact her, but the big brother was in such shock, the trio just rushed back home.
She said: “I am kicking myself because it was the first time ever I’ve let them go to the park on their own.
“It’s just sad because we live in Folkestone and it’s a small town, you don’t expect that.
“I let them go because it had been a busy day and I’d just picked up all the boys from school and my other son wanted to go to youth club, and I thought I could do with a little rest.
“If I hadn’t been struggling so much I might not have let them go, I feel a bit guilty.”
The mum, who cannot work because of her disability, said that she reckons she may know some of the perpetrators, but as they have yet to own up, cannot say who they are.
She said: “I’ve tried to reassure all the children that the police will deal with the issue.”
“He has a ten-year-old and a 15-year-old brother so is used to some rough and tumble.
“He was lucky to escape with only minor injuries.”
A spokesman for Kent Police said: “Kent Police are appealing for witnesses to an assault on a six-year-old boy at Canterbury Road Recreation Ground in Folkestone.
“The assault took place between 6pm and 6.45pm on Thursday, September 10.
“The boy was with his older brother and a friend and was trying to climb up on the roof of a shelter in the park when he was surrounded by a group of teenage boys and girls aged around 13 to 14.
“One of the suspects is a boy described as having dark hair and was wearing a white T-shirt and jeans or combat trousers.
“Another suspect police would like to trace is a girl with blonde and purple hair wearing a purple T-shirt, black leggings and dark purple hooded top.
“Police would like to hear from anyone who witnessed the assault, or can give police the names of those involved.”