The Taupō community has been left "hugely disappointed" after a memorial remembering children who were abused by their caregivers was vandalised.
The memorial was for children including three-year-old Moko Rangitoheriri, who died in August 2015 following weeks of abuse and neglect by his caregivers.
It included a commemoration plaque called 'Angels of NAI' (non-accidental injuries) and a long bench in the shape of a koru, which wrapped around a tree on the corner of Spa Road and Paora Hapi Street.
Photos posted to a community Facebook page last week show parts of the bench have been snapped off at the sides and left on the ground.
"The lack of community spirit and respect for our property and environment by some people today is astounding and there doesn’t seem to be enough consequences to encourage change either," one person wrote.
"Pretty pathetic," another said.
Another commenter called it: "despicable behaviour".
In a statement to Newshub, Taupō District Council chief executive Gareth Green said they were aware of the damage and are in the process of repairing it.
"This is, of course, hugely disappointing and we encourage our community to respect the area.
"If you see anyone misusing the area or deliberately damaging the memorial, please get in touch with the Police in the first instance."