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Gang of thugs leave 13-year-old Jake Aldridge bleeding after park attack in Sittingbourne

By Steve Waite

A mum whose 13-year-old son was left with nasty facial injuries after an unprovoked attack has appealed for help to find his attackers.

Jake Aldridge was playing with friends in King George V playing field, Sittingbourne, on Saturday when he was punched in the face.

The force of the blow left him with a broken tooth and blood pouring from his nose and mouth. He also has a black eye.

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Jake Aldridge after the attack
Jake Aldridge after the attack

His mum, Sarah, who is borough councillor for Roman ward, said: “Jake is one of the kindest, most sensitive boys.

For someone to do this, randomly punch a 13-year-old in a family park, is disgusting.

“They are just thugs. They need to be caught. I feel they are probably going to do it again. We want them caught before someone else gets hurt.”

“He punched me in the face. I remember falling down. Shock took over quite a bit. I could see blood dripping down” - Jake

Jake, who goes to Fulston Manor School, was playing football with four friends when they noticed three older boys they did not recognise.

He said they all got a “dodgy feeling” so went to move to another part of the park when they were chased.

One friend was pushed off his bike, and when they went to see if he was OK, Jake was attacked.

Jake said: “One of the attackers charged at me. He said ‘why are you swearing?’ We weren’t swearing.

“He punched me in the face. I remember falling down.

“Shock took over quite a bit. I could see blood dripping down.”

Jake’s nan, Pamela Hallybone, 65, who lives nearby, was first to arrive.

“When I got to Jake I was really shocked because he was lying down,” she said.

VIDEO: Boy, 13, punched in the face

“There was blood on the grass. He looked really awful.”

Jake was taken by his dad, Lee, 45, to Medway Maritime Hospital in Gillingham, where he was cleaned up and checked over and has an appointment with the dentist to assess the extent of the damage to his mouth.

Cllr Aldridge, 42, who thanked all those who had sent messages of support, said since the attack both her son and daughter, Amber, 10, who has autism, had been having trouble sleeping.

But the ordeal had been a particular setback for Jake, who has Asperger’s syndrome, she added: “He doesn’t want to go out any more. His physical injuries will heal but the emotional and mental injuries are going to take a lot of time, especially with Jake’s Asperger’s and high anxiety.”

Police confirmed they are investigating and are appealing for witnesses. Jake’s attacker was described as aged about 14 to 16, slim, 5ft 10in and of mixed race, with short dark hair.

Anyone with information should call police on 101, quoting reference XY/42968/15.

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