Christchurch family traumatised after children break into house and behead their pets

Chris Lynch
Chris Lynch
Mar 11, 2023 |

Paint splashed across furniture Photo: Supplied


A Parklands family is traumatised after young children broke into their home and beheaded their pets.

Resident Nikki Hawke said she and her 10-year-old step daughter returned to their Heathglen Avenue house just after 3PM on Friday to find it had been “completely ransacked.”

Two children, aged six and nine, from the local neighbourhood, entered their property causing extensive damage.

Social media posts on a community page revealed that the children were reported missing from their house and were known to social services and the police.

Nikki tearfully told Chris Lynch Media “they started in the garage, then smashed windows, before tipping paint pots around the house.

They broke electrical appliances, smashed televisions, and even shaved their heads in a spare bedroom before disabling the security cameras. It was beyond belief.”

The children shaved their head in the family’s spare room. Photo: Supplied

Smashed television screen. Photo: Supplied

The situation took a gruesome turn when the children removed fish from the family’s tank and beheaded them, before moving on to the large pond outside where they continued their shocking act.

Nikki said the children also used an axe to smash the door of the sleepout breaking windows while covering others in paint.

“They emptied the fridge and freezer and demolished the kitchen. They trashed plants inside and outside.”

Nikki estimated that the children caused the damage in just one hour.

Smashed windows caused by children Photo: Supplied

Neighbours’ security footage shows the children walking along the street with a carving knife “stolen from the kitchen.”

Nikki said the children threatened a woman on the same street, who then phoned police.

When Nikki called police, the call taker asked her what colour the paint was, and upon providing the information, it was confirmed that the offenders had been captured as they were covered in paint.

“I think the worst part about it, was when I called 111, police already knew what had happened.”

Despite the severity of the incident, police officers told Nikki that due to the age of the offenders, no further action could be taken against them.

Chris Lynch Media understands the offenders’ mother, who recently gave birth, refused to hand her children over to alternative care.

As a result of the traumatic experience, Nikki’s daughter was now staying with a family member.

Window painted in. Photo: Supplied

Nikki said “we live a real simple life and we’ve worked really hard. Why do we have to go to work and come home to this?

“There were so many items of value they just threw in the pond, from a Play Station to laptops to even a mirror.”

“We’re frightened to go to sleep, worried they’ll come back. We’re talking about children here. But the officer told us they’re too young to even understand what direction they were going in.”

Nikki said there was little help for the family from authorities and she had not received a call from Victim Support.

However, she said the family was grateful to the community for their support following the incident.

Outdoor plants destroyed. Photo: Supplied

Parklands resident Tania Miller said the children were well known to police, and they just take them home every time something happens.

She said Oranga Tamariki was involved but still allow the children to stay with their mother who has openly admitted on social media she is not coping.

Tania said Parklands residents have been dealing with these kids for nearly one year now.

“The children are continuously running away and police have been called more than twenty times. Someone needs to step in and remove the children and get them some serious help.”

Tania said “I’ve been in Parklands for 33 years and I’ve never seen anything like it. I went to the house today that was affected and offered to help clean and gave their child a Play Station. Seeing the damage in person was heartbreaking.”

A police spokesperson told Chris Lynch Media police received reports of several incidents that occurred in the Parklands area yesterday and these were under investigation.

“After locating the boys, police spoke with them, they were not arrested.

Any link the boys may have to the Parklands incidents is still being determined” the police spokeswoman said.

Oranga Tamaki has been approached for comment.

Chris Lynch
Chris Lynch

Chris Lynch is a journalist, videographer and content producer, broadcasting from his independent news and production company in Christchurch, New Zealand. If you have a news tip or are interested in video content, email [email protected]

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