A BRUTAL attack on a 13-year-old boy occurred early this week in a Lucan park, in what appears to have been a completely random assault.
Alan Griffin was walking through Ballyowen Park (Hermitage) at 3pm with a friend when he was attacked by a number of hooded youths near the main entrance.
According to the victim’s father, Paul Griffin, his son was hit in the face with a blue nylon rope that was set on fire, causing severe burns to the child’s face.
He said: “My son was coming back from the local Texaco station with a friend and was walking through Ballyowen Park when a couple of older individuals swung a flaming plastic rope at his face.
“I believe that my son was randomly attacked by people who he had no previous association with.”
The teenager was immediately rushed to Temple Street Children’s Hospital, where he is currently being treated for severe burns to his face and fingers.
Mr Griffin said: “When my son was hit by this melting object, the plastic material stuck to his face, and when he attempted to pull it off it attached to his hand, causing further burns.
“The object hit him inches underneath his eye, and he’s extremely lucky that they didn’t blind him. He has been to the burn clinic and has another appointment there next week.”
A spokesperson from the Garda Press Office has confirmed that an incident took place in Ballyowen Park on Monday afternoon, and that the Garda are presently investigating the incident.
The spokesperson said: “It has been alleged that a number of youths were involved in this attack, and we are in the process of gathering suspects.”
A local Garda source said it is believed that two youths attacked the young boy. One is described as wearing a pair of three-quarter-length denim shorts, and a brown top.
The source said there have been a number of cases of anti-social behaviour that have occurred in the surrounding parks in the past, and made an appeal to anyone with further information to come forward to the gardai.
The source added: “What’s bizarre about this incident is that it happened during the middle of the day and, due to the severity of the attack, we are very anxious for any eye-witnesses to come forward and help us in our investigation.”
Cllr William Lavelle (FG) has appealed to the residents of Lucan to come forward with any information they may have in relation to anti-social behaviour.
He said: “Ballyowen Park is a place for the community to enjoy without the fear of being harassed or threatened.”