A group of young thugs is being hunted over a brutal bashing at Hastings that left a man badly injured, and his beloved dog dead.
Geoff Carlile had been walking his Jack Russell, Bella, and Golden Retriever, Buddy, on February 15 when he was targeted by three youths, two boys and a girl, and bashed unconscious after a verbal altercation.
Little Bella was bashed to death with a fence post after Geoff's attackers had finished with him.
"It looked like one blow to the head, her eyes were still open and she was just laying there with a pool of blood in front of her mouth," Geoff told Seven News reporter Brendan Roberts.
"It’s gut wrenching. I’ve only had the dog 10 to 12 months, not even 12 months, and every time I walked in the front door she would get up, jump on my knee and give me a kiss," Geoff said choking back tears.
The senseless street bashing left Geoff with horrific injuries.
"I had a broken nose, six broken bones around the eye socket, compressed in and putting a lot of pressure on the eye, on the optical nerve itself. I had to have a plate from side to the other," he said.
Geoff says the brutal attack was sparked by a confrontation earlier in the night when he told the trio off for riding their motorbikes close to where his children were sleeping.
Geoff was recently released from hospital and is unable to work due to his injuries.