A Bay of Plenty school girl was left dripping in blood, injured and traumatised after an alleged beating by teenagers while waiting for a bus.
“It breaks my heart to know that our babies aren’t safe to wait for the bus home,” says the girl’s mother.
The alleged incident happened this week at the bus stop on Haupapa Street, Rotorua, outside Rotorua Library in the town centre.
The 13-year-old girl was waiting to catch a bus home when she was approached, then beaten by an older teenager, surrounded by others, says the mother.
The person responsible and the group they were with are not known to the girl, and she has no idea why they did it, she says.
“It’s a parent’s worst nightmare when your babies are hurt. It’s horrible as working parents it’s our only means of transportation to home from school.”
The family reported the incident at the police station where her injuries were documented.
Rotorua police inspector Phil Gillbanks says police have identified the attacker who has been referred to the youth judice system.
“We are supporting the victim and their whānau, and the other person has been referred to the youth services process.”
Police are aware of incidents in the area around the bus stop, he says, and recognise it’s a busy spot, particularly during after school and commuter periods.
“We are actively working with our community partners to ensure the area remains safe and any anti-social behaviour avoided.”
Gillbanks encourages people in the community to report any incidents to police by calling 111 if it’s happening in front of them.
While her daughter is sore and bruised, it is the mental trauma which will take time, says the concerned mother, who is keeping her daughter off school so she could prepare her to feel safe again.