'Viral' parties threat: Mum

By Corey Charlton

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A mother whose teenage son was assaulted at an unruly party in Napier says it's only a matter of time before someone is killed at such out-of-control gatherings.

Her 17-year-old received a "kicking" by a group of gang members, his mother said, at a party which had gone viral on Facebook.

The party, on Hornsey Rd near Napier Port, was attended by hundreds of youths and needed to be broken up by police on Friday night.

The mother, who did not wish to be named, feared someone could be killed if steps were not taken to prevent such incidents re-occurring.

She also cited an incident in June, in which her son's cousin was stabbed several times after an out-of-control party in Tamatea.

"Kicking in the head, stomping or getting hit with bottles; they are serious assaults," she said.

"It seems to be getting worse and worse and worse. One of them will end up dead if something doesn't change soon."

The first police officers to arrive, about 10.15pm, were pelted with bottles and abused.

One bottle smashed through the window of a police car and by then several people had been taken away by friends for medical treatment.

The woman's son received a 'Viral' parties growing threat, mum warns

It all comes down to youth and alcohol, without exception. It's time for young people to take some responsibility for their drinking and their attitude to drinking.Police representativeEditorial, p10black eye and bruised nose after he was attacked by some of the party-goers.

"Once things started getting a bit out of control, that's when he was attacked," she said.

"By then he'd been split from his friends, too, so his friends would not have been able to haul him out.

"If they are going to kick them in the head when they're on the ground.

"They could kick them anywhere too hard and it could be an injury that causes some serious harm."

A police representative said police "absolutely" shared the mother's concerns.

"It all comes down to youth and alcohol, without exception.

"All these parties and violence that result from them is the result of too much alcohol.

"It's time for young people to take some responsibility for their drinking and their attitude to drinking.

"We absolutely share those concerns.

"Police can only do so much and it's up to those young people, and their families, to change their attitudes about drinking."

The boy's mother suggested concerned parents meet with the police's Alcohol Harm Reduction Group to discuss ways they could together change teenagers' attitudes.

"What can us parents do? I suppose there is no easy fix, but they are getting worse," she said. "These parties are getting worse and I do blame social media."

Police said a meeting between themselves and parents was a "fantastic idea".

"We would be very keen to look at that and we commend this mother on taking that action and airing her concerns," the representative said.

"Facebook has a huge role in these parties that get out of control. Our advice is not to use Facebook under any circumstances."

- HAWKES BAY TODAY

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