A Melbourne teenager about to try out for an international soccer career is fighting for his life after a one-punch attack at an out-of-control party.
Fifteen-year-old Jaiden was punched and struck his head on the footpath near a Bayswater hall, where about 100 party-goers and gatecrashers had converged on Saturday night.
His mother, Karyn, said her son was an athlete with a placid personality who never would have provoked such an attack.
“My son who had the world at his feet now has a long road to go to get back to where he was,” she told reporters at the Royal Children’s Hospital on Monday.
“Young people need to know this not on. People are getting hurt for nothing.”
Jaiden was due to head to Italy in September for a trial to play soccer professionally.
Police say there were a number of fights inside the hall that spilled onto the street.
Officers broke up the fights but some of the crowd returned and continued fighting.
Detective Rick Rittinger from Knox CIU said Jaiden was hit without warning.
“It was a case of the offender running past and stopping the victim and continuing running. There was no altercation, nothing said,” he told reporters.
Jaiden fell to the ground and hit his head on the footpath.
He called his mother to pick him up from the party but once in the car, the Carrum Downs teenager began having seizures and she rushed him to a nearby hospital.
He was transferred to the Royal Children’s Hospital and placed in an induced coma.
The Rowville Secondary College student remains in the coma with bleeding on the brain.
Police are looking for a male with blue jeans, a hoodie and possibly blond hair. aged in his late-teens to early 20s.
The incident comes just days after the Victorian government announced it would introduce mandatory 10-year jail terms for perpetrators of one-punch attacks which result in a death.