Teen with special needs stabbed and beaten near NI park

The mother of a teenage boy with special needs, who was stabbed and beaten near an NI park, says he is lucky to be alive.

Monday, 8th March 2021, 4:24 pm

Louise Haughian from Lurgan says her 17-year-old son DJ was badly beaten and stabbed in an unprovoked attacked near Lurgan Park, Co Armagh.

She revealed how he was approached and attacked by a gang of youths, kicked, punched and stomped on by them as well as stabbed.

The incident happened in the Windsor Avenue area of Lurgan at 9pm last Thursday night (March 4).

Windsor Avenue, Lurgan. Photo courtesy of Google.

Mrs Haughian said: “Only by grace of God he managed to escape and run for his life. He is incredibly lucky to be alive.

“I am still in complete shock that it has happened. DJ is in bad way. He was beaten pretty badly with lots of bruises to his face, head, shoulder, arms and body. He was stabbed in wrist which needed stitches.

“DJ is autistic and has ADHD. He attends gathering rooms in Armagh on work experience once a week.

“He was on his own walking when he was approached and attacked.

“He managed to escape and climb the park fence and run and climb out of park.

“He ran to people who helped him and phoned an ambulance and the police.

“When he arrived at hospital I was already there as police had phoned me so I had made my way straight there - fearing the worst.

“The image of the state he was in when he was stretchered out of ambulance will never leave me.

“Just breaks my heart that anyone would do anything like this to another person,” said Louise.

“He is extremely sore and can’t sleep. He can’t get comfortable and he has no feeling or movement in the hand of wrist he was stabbed in,” said Louise adding that her son is now on strong painkillers and anti-biotics.

“The pain and swelling is just awful for him. The rest of us, his sisters and myself, could do nothing but cry when we first seen him.”

She has pleaded with anyone with information to contact her or a family friend or the police.

“If you witnessed this or seen anything, no matter how small, please come forward as this can not continue.

“I am so thankful to the girl who phoned an ambulance and the people that stopped and helped DJ until ambulance arrived. Also I am thankful to the ambulance staff and hospital staff for everything. Without them it would have been a completely different outcome.”

A PSNI spokesperson said: “Police are appealing for information in relation to an assault in the Windsor Avenue area of Lurgan at 9pm on Thursday 4th March 2021.

“As a result of the assault a 17-year-old male sustained injuries to his head, wrist and shoulders.

“If you did see anything or can help us with this enquiry please call 101 quoting serial 1873 4/3/21. You can also contact the independent charity Crimestoppers by calling 0800 555111.”

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