An eleven year-old Derry boy who sustained serious burns when he was hit with a petrol bomb is recovering at his home in Creggan.
Kevin Grint was playing with friends in the Bishop’s Field Park area, close to his home, on Thursday afternoon when he was hit on the back with the petrol bomb.
He received second degree burns to his back and was rushed to the Royal Victoria Hospital in Belfast for treatment immediately after the incident.
He was later moved to Altnagelvin Hospital on Friday before being allowed to return to his Iniscarn Crescent home.
The 11 year-old said he was happy to be back home and that he was in “no pain.”
His mother, Donna Donnell, said she was “delighted” to have him back home. “Words can’t describe what it was like when they told me Kevin was coming home; I was over the moon,” she said.
PSNI Chief Inspector Jon Burrows appealed to the community in Creggan to assist the police investigation into the incident.
“This young man is very badly injured. We are shocked by this incident, even as hardened police officers,” he said.
He also said the exact circumstances of the incident were unclear and encouraged people in the area to come forward with information.
“I don’t know whether it was a prank, I don’t even know if it was badness, maliciousness. What I do know is that someone was clearly committing a crime because they had a petrol bomb and someone has been very badly injured.
“We need the help of the community in Creggan. I’ve no doubt people know who did this and if you can’t tell us directly, if you can’t give us a statement of evidence, please ring Crimestoppers. Give us the names of who did this,” he said.
A police spokesperson said it is believed that two boys, described as around 12 or 13 years-old, were involved in the incident.
Creggan SDLP councillor Jim Clifford also asked anyone with information on the incident to come forward.
“A petrol bomb is as dangerous as a gun and this incident could have even resulted in a fatality.
“I wish this young boy a speedy recovery and would urge anyone with information on this serious attack to pass it on to the police immediately,” he said.
Sinn Féin councillor Kevin Campbell said; “Anyone who sees anything suspicious or petrol bombs in local parks should contact community workers or the PSNI immediately. These items are too dangerous to be left lying around in public parks.”