Two Sheffield schoolboys needed hospital treatment after being attacked as they played in the snow.
Police are now investigating the unprovoked attack on Forge Valley School pupil Josh Ellis, aged 11, and a nine-year-old friend as they played on Watermeet Road, Malin Bridge.
A car pulled up alongside and a man jumped out and beat the boys up.
The youngsters were taken to Sheffield Children’s Hospital with cuts and bruises and the attack was reported to South Yorkshire Police.
Amy Fairest, Josh’s mum, said: “Josh and his friend were playing out in the snow, just having fun like kids do, when a jeep-style vehicle pulled up and a man got out and just beat them up.
“He was wearing a scarf over his mouth and had his hood up and there were others in the jeep, including a girl in a pink jacket.
“There was no provocation for it whatsoever – and, even if there had been, nobody has the right to beat up children.
“Whoever did this needs to know we will not rest until they are tracked down and dealt with by the police – it is absolutely disgusting.”
A South Yorkshire Police spokesman said: “Police are looking into an allegation of assault on two young boys in the Malin Bridge area of the city.
“It was reported a motorist got out of his vehicle and assaulted them.
“It was reported one of the boys was hit in the stomach and head, the other boy was hit in his ribs and face.
“Both boys were taken to hospital for a check-up.
“Enquiries are ongoing to locate the suspect, who was believed to be wearing dark clothing and driving a red Suzuki -type vehicle.
“Increased patrols will be carried out in the area to provide reassurance to the local community.”
Josh’s mum said the car was red and there was a yellow smiley sticker on the aerial.
She said: “It is a good description of the jeep and I am sure someone somewhere will know who it belongs to and that the police will track down whoever did this.
“My son and his friend suffered cuts and bruises physically, but were also affected psychologically – they are really shaken up. They are only children.”
n Anyone with information about Tuesday’s incident, which happened between 4.30pm and 5pm, is asked to call South Yorkshire Police on 101, quoting incident 767. Crimestoppers can also be contacted anonymously on 0800 555111.