A teenage boy was suddenly and brutally attacked at a park while out jogging in west Auckland on Thursday.
The 17-year-old was hospitalised due to severe facial injuries after being beaten up at Spargo Reserve in Massey at about 1pm.
The boy needed more than 40 stitches on his face and dentistry work after the attack, which left him "traumatised", NZME reported.
He was walking at the reserve when approached by a group of men who assaulted him before fleeing in a vehicle, a police spokesperson told Newshub.
The boy's mother, Louise Williams, told NZME she is now considering moving her family out of Auckland.
"I spoke to my mate in Christchurch. I'm thinking of just packing my kids up and going.
"There is nothing here. They are not safe," Williams told the NZ Herald.
She says her son called her to say he was going for a run at 1pm, but 10 minutes later he called again.
"[He was] screaming and crying [that] he'd been bashed at the local park. I just took off and raced over," Williams told NZME.
Waitematā Police Acting Senior Sergeant Greg Wilson said enquiries into the incident were ongoing.
"We want to reassure the victim, and the community, that we are doing all we can to locate the offenders," Wilson said. "We believe there are people who witnessed what happened and may have vital information that can help us identify and locate the offenders."
It's understood a woman helped the victim at the time of the incident but left soon after.
Police would still like to encourage anyone with information, or who may have seen anything suspicious in the area at the time, to call 105 quoting file number 201023/8330.
People can also contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.