A terminally ill man from Middlesbrough, England, claimed a group of teenagers attacked him Friday while he walked through his neighborhood.
Mark Walker, 48, was hospitalized for bruises to his face he said stemmed from an attack involving six teenagers who punched and kicked him during his trip to the local Chinese restaurant, regional publication Gazette Live reported.
According to reports, the alleged beating occurred while Walker left his home and proceeded to a restaurant near his Pallister Park home in Berwick Hills.
Walker’s niece, Jodie Moore, told the paper that her uncle was deemed terminally ill with preexisting health issues and had just months to live.
“Mark can barely walk,” she said. “He is really poorly. What if anything happens to him this week?”
Moore said crime has run rampant and the same group of teens has been terrorizing the town.
“Kids are ruling the town. They aren’t even kids they are animals,” Moore added. “It’s the same kids doing all these attacks. What’s it going to take, someone murdered before something is done?”
The Middlesbrough Neighborhood Policing Team said that authorities were aware of the “rumors circulating” around the attack.
“We would like to clarify that we are aware of this incident, have made contact with the victim’s family and inquiries are ongoing,” the department wrote on its official Facebook page.
Local law enforcement confirmed to the Gazette that they received a call regarding the incident and that there haven’t been any arrests.
“Police have received a report that a man was assaulted on Parkway Grove in Pallister Park, Middlesbrough, on Friday evening. Officers are continuing to carry out inquiries,” a Cleveland Police spokesperson said.
England’s Berwick Hills, Pallister Park and Belle Vue neighborhoods have all seen a string of similar crimes this month. On March 2, a gang of teens reportedly beat a man outside a convenience store in Norfolk.
The attacks have since prompted officials to increase police presence in the area. Officers have reportedly arrested 14 teenagers in connection with crimes including criminal damage, robbery and assault.